Legal Guidance for North Tampa Residents Dealing with Spinal Cord Injuries
Serious accidents can happen at any time, and dealing with their aftermath can be daunting. If you were paralyzed in an event caused by the negligence of someone else, your first priority should be your physical and emotional recovery. However, you also may want to think about taking legal action against any parties that may be responsible. The attorneys at Holliday Karatinos Law Firm, PLLC are committed to helping victims of spinal cord injuries in North Tampa and other Florida cities, including New Tampa, Brooksville, and Lutz. We can handle all aspects of your claim from the moment you walk in our office to the conclusion of a jury trial, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
Bringing a Negligence Claim for Compensation
Quadriplegia, also called tetraplegia, occurs when a complete spinal cord injury leaves a person paralyzed in the torso, pelvic organs, and all four limbs. This type of harm often happens to victims of serious car crashes or truck accidents, but quadriplegia can be caused in any number of ways.
If the careless behavior of a person or company is responsible for an individual’s spinal cord injury, he or she may have the basis for a negligence lawsuit. To prevail in such a claim, the victim must prove four essential elements:
- A legal obligation to behave in accordance with a specific standard of care;
- Failure to abide by that standard of care;
- Direct (actual and proximate) causation; and
- Actual damages.
The legal obligation to behave in a certain way is called a duty. Everyone in Florida is held to a standard of reasonable care, which simply requires a person to avoid unreasonable behavior that is likely to endanger surrounding people. When a person fails to live up to his or her legal duty, it is referred to as a breach. A person who drives drunk, for example, has likely breached the duty of reasonable care, as has a trucking company that allows undertrained truck drivers on the road.
It is also important to prove that the defendant’s breach caused the victim’s injuries. This requires a demonstration that the harm would not have occurred but for the defendant’s negligence and that the injuries were a foreseeable consequence of it.
In a case involving quadriplegia, identifying the various types of damages incurred is likely to be a critical issue. Compensable losses may include financial expenditures that occurred as a result of the defendant’s behavior, such as past and future medical bills and lost wages. Medical records, billing records, and past pay stubs and tax returns may provide evidence of these costs. The jury may also award damages for intangible harm, such as pain and suffering, loss of life enjoyment, emotional distress, and disfigurement. Evidence of these types of injuries is usually presented through the victim’s own testimony or the testimony of friends and family who know the victim well.
Protect Your Rights After an Accident by Enlisting a Spring Hill Attorney
Cases involving catastrophic injuries can be complex. They often require developing a claim against a sophisticated corporate defendant with an army of lawyers, understanding the medical nuances of the harm, and clearly presenting arguments to a jury. The injury lawyers at Holliday Karatinos Law Firm, PLLC have experience doing just that for residents of Spring Hill as well as Hillsborough and Citrus Counties, among other areas of Florida. If you have been seriously hurt by a negligent person or company, we can help. To talk to an attorney at no cost to you, contact us online or call (866) 597-0009.