spinal cord injury case

Managing the difficult aftermath of a spinal cord injury (SCI) can be as complex as the human spine itself. From the physical and emotional toll on the victim to the financial implications for their families, an SCI often entails a long, arduous journey of rehabilitation and adjustment.


For those seeking compensation, understanding the value of a spinal cord injury settlement in a personal injury claim is essential. This blog dives into the process of valuing a spinal cord injury case, particularly in Los Angeles, providing actionable insights for claimants and legal practitioners alike.



Understanding Spinal Cord Injuries | Los Angeles Statistics

spinal cord injury statistics in los angeles

Spinal cord injuries refer to any damage to the spinal cord that results in a loss of function, either temporarily or permanently. They can be sudden and catastrophic, dramatically altering a person’s capabilities and way of life.


In busy cities like Los Angeles, where the fast pace often coincides with higher risks of accidents, the statistics on SCI are always sobering. However, the numbers only scratch the surface of the profound impact these injuries have on individual lives and the subsequent need for fair compensation.


The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center estimated that there are 54 cases of spinal cord injury per one million people in the United States annually, totaling approximately 17,730 new cases each year. According to Statista‘s data from 2015 to 2019, the leading cause of spinal injury in the US is vehicle accidents (38.2%), followed by falls (22%), intoxication (25%), violence (16%), and sports (12%).

Type of Spinal Cord Injury Cases

There are two primary types of spinal cord injuries: complete and incomplete.


A complete injury results in a total loss of sensation and motor function below the injury site. An incomplete injury means some motor or sensory function is retained.


The severity of the injury dictates the level of impairment — from paraplegia, which affects the lower half of the body, to tetraplegia (formerly known as quadriplegia) that involves both the upper and lower body. Los Angeles being a hub for various activities, including sports, travel, and an array of industries, sees the full spectrum of severe spinal cord injuries and their consequences.

Trucking is an essential industry that keeps goods moving throughout our country and beyond. However, with large vehicles comes a greater responsibility for safety on the roads. Many truck accident cases lead to catastrophe and result in significant damage to property, injuries, and even fatalities.

Lifelong Adjustments and Costs of Spinal Injury

The financial costs of living with a spinal cord injury are substantial, reaching well into the millions over a lifetime.


These expenses include medical procedures, rehabilitative services, medication, adaptive equipment, home modifications, and in-home care. Victims must also grapple with emotional and psychological challenges, often requiring specialized therapy and support. The impacts are truly lifelong, and as such, the compensation must reflect this lengthy and broad-ranging burden.


The financial burden affects spinal cord injury victims and their families and loved ones. Many victims of spinal cord injuries are unable to return to their previous employment, resulting in a loss of income and financial support for their families. This can lead to additional stress and strain on relationships.


The emotional toll of SCI is also significant. Victims often experience psychological issues such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and feelings of isolation and hopelessness. These mental health struggles can have a profound impact on one’s quality of life and ability to cope with the challenges of SCI.


The physical limitations caused by spinal cord injuries often require individuals to make extensive adjustments in their daily lives. Simple tasks like bathing, dressing, or using the bathroom can become difficult or impossible without assistance or adaptive equipment.

Factors Affecting the Value of a Spinal Cord Injury Claim

factors affecting the value of a spinal cord injury claim

Valuing spinal cord injury settlement amounts is a meticulous process that takes into account a multitude of factors. These include the direct economic impacts, such as medical bills and lost wages, as well as the more intangible but no less important facets of the victim’s suffering and loss.

The Severity of the Injury

The key determinant is the severity of the injury. Paralysis and loss of function are the hallmarks of a SCI, and the more extensive the paralysis, the higher the value of the claim.

Medical Expenses and Ongoing Care Costs

The cost of treating a spinal cord injury can be exorbitant, beginning with emergency care and surgery and extending to include post-acute care and lifelong treatment.

Loss of Income and Earning Capacity

The financial toll is not limited to medical expenses. A spinal cord injury can result in the victim’s permanent inability to work, significantly reducing their income over a lifetime.

Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering are non-economic damages that are not easily quantifiable but are crucial to the claim’s value. The emotional and physical anguish associated with a SCI warrant significant compensation.

Emotional and Psychological Impact

The emotional and psychological effects of spinal cord injuries can be just as debilitating as the physical. Compensation here typically includes therapy costs and the impact on the victim’s quality of life.

Calculating the Value of a Spinal Cord Injury
Settlement in LA

In personal injury law, Los Angeles employs various methods to calculate the worth of a spinal cord injury claim. The approach involves a combination of objective and subjective factors, often using multiple calculations to get a comprehensive value.

The legal profession utilizes diverse calculation methods, including the multiplier method, the per diem method, and the insurance adjuster’s informal method. These are based on precedents, medical evidence, and the circumstances of the case.

Role of Medical Experts and Specialists

Medical experts play a pivotal role in assessing the severity of a spinal cord injury. Their evaluations and testimony contribute to the objective measurement of damages, aiding in securing the appropriate compensation.

The Role of a Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Having an experienced personal injury attorney in Los Angeles is invaluable in pursuing a compelling case and maximizing compensation. Lawyers provide the expertise needed to navigate the legal system, negotiate with insurance companies, and litigate in court when necessary.

The legal process for a spinal cord injury claim can be convoluted and requires a keen understanding of personal injury law. Lawyers guide clients through each step, ensuring they meet all necessary requirements.

Maximizing the Settlement for a Spinal Cord Damage Claim

Lawyers with a focus on SCI claims understand the stakes involved and dedicate themselves to assessing all potential angles for compensation. They often work with vocational rehabilitation specialists and financial planners to accurately calculate the true value of economic damages.

Speak to Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer
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How much is my spinal cord injury case worth? The value goes far beyond a monetary figure — it represents justice, security, and a chance for a better future despite the life-changing circumstances.


For those thrust into the harrowing reality of an SCI, understanding the value of their claim is not just academic; it’s a critical step in the journey towards a semblance of normalcy.


By leveraging the information and expertise outlined in this guide, personal injury claimants can approach their cases with clarity and purpose, ensuring that they receive the full and fair compensation they deserve for the hardships they have endured.


If you or someone you know is grappling with the aftermath of a spinal cord injury, remember that the value of your claim is not a matter of chance – it’s a matter of informed, strategic pursuit, often best achieved with the guidance of a seasoned legal professional.


RTM Law Firm has personal injury lawyers, case managers, and medical specialists who are dedicated to helping victims secure the compensation they deserve. Contact our injury attorneys in LA today for a free consultation, and let us fight for your rights.


Call us at (323) 990-8853. We are available 24/7.




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