Spinal Injury Compensation Claims

Spinal injuries vary from common ‘whiplash’ to life-changing such as damage to spinal cord and nerves. The most common causes of spinal injury are:

  • Medical malpractice
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Workplace injuries
  • Product liability
  • Premises liability
  • Nursing home negligence
  • Wrongful death situations
  • Constructive site injuries

Spinal cord injury can result in complete or partial loss of movement and sensation affecting our legs (paraplegia) or legs and arms (tetraplegia). Bladder and bowel function are often affected as well. Mobility is very often severely affected and many who suffer spinal cord injury often require wheelchairs and assistance with daily activities. Psychological and psychiatric issues are also very common among those injured as the injuries often cause one to think that the things most important to them in life may never be the same.

Severe injuries to the spine often result in paralysis and loss of body functions causing loss of independence, career, quality of life and affecting the injured’s family life for a long time or forever.  It is often the case that the injured are not aware of their rights and do not receive adequate care and compensation. It is clear that no compensation can ever return the loss of mobility or reverse the psychological damages, however, appropriate compensation will significantly improve the quality of life and provide financial stability for the injured and their loved ones, to be able to afford ongoing therapy, carers and to afford to modify the injured’s home to make mobility easier.

The aspects of care that you may claim compensation for are:

  1. Medical expenses;
  2. Personal suffering and pain;
  3. Loss of earnings – current and future;
  4. Loss of amenity – work, social life and domestic life;
  5. Adaptations to your home; and
  6. Rehabilitation and therapy.

Recent case law has provided guidance to demonstrate that the damages awarded can be substantial as in the case of Walsh v Tesco Ireland Limited [2016] IEHC 322, in which the Claimant, who suffered a back injury having slipped on grapes on the floor of supermarket, was awarded damages of €1,439,495, which Tesco was ordered to pay. In Nolan v Wirenski [2016] IEHC 322 the Judge recognised that calculation of damages in such complex cases of spinal injuries has to be considered on an individual basis as the Claimant often suffers from both physical and psychological trauma over a long-term period. Judge Irvine commented:

“The assessment of damages in personal injuries is not a precise calculation; it is not precise and it is not a calculation”

In Nolan and Wirenski the damages awarded by the court are summarised as follows:

  1. General damages (to date): €125,000;
  2. General damages (future): €135,000;
  3. Past special damages: €110,987;
  4. Loss of earnings for two years: €20,000;
  5. Loss of earnings thereafter: €373,030;
  6. Urology costs (future): €132,750;
  7. Home help: €110,000;
  8. Other expenses: €192,000;
  9. Aids and appliances: €239,846; and

The total of the damages awarded to the Claimant: €1,439,495.

Competent and experienced legal representation is crucial in spinal injury cases from the outset as these matters often tend to be complex and require right expertise. At Bloomsbury Law our specialist lawyers have experience in handling complex cases where liability may initially be denied and we work closely with some of the best and most renowned surgeons in London. We also ensure that care and assistance are provided beyond reaching the settlement – we also advise our clients on matters such as long-term financial planning or rehabilitation within private hospitals and NHS hospitals.

‘’At Bloomsbury Law we understand how devastating an injury to the spine can be. As the Head of Bloomsbury Law’s Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Department, I strive to ensure that my clients are provided not only with quality legal advice but also with a personal and assuring approach which is crucial during such a life-changing event. We have acted in many spinal injury cases in recent years and we have obtained excellent results for our clients.” – Head of Personal Injury and Medical Negligence

If you would like more information, speak to our Personal Injury Solicitor, Zahreen Hussain on 020 7998 7777 or contact us online so we may arrange a call back.

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