Back Injury Car Accident Settlements: How to Value Back Injury Cases
Car accidents make the news a lot. Dramatic headlines spread across Illinois and the country. Their rate is rising every year. It makes learning about them critical and the common injuries they may cause.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC handles car accident injuries after motor vehicle accident. We do so in Illinois and other states. We help clients get various damages. The car accident lawyers of our law firm can fight to obtain injury settlements for your personal injuries above and beyond the average settlement. This financial compensation should reimburse you for your economic and non-economic damages like medical care (i.e. MRI, fusion surgery, etc.) and subsequent medical costs.
Most victims have excruciating back pain injuries after a car crash such as whiplash, bulging discs, and other neck injuries. We wrote these pages to offer perspective on back pain injuries. You can do something after a car accident if you or a loved one hurt your lower back.
You can get relief and recovery with one of our personal injury attorneys. We will help. Read these pages to learn more the serious injuries at-fault drivers cause and what a higher settlement or even fair settlement might mean for you.
- The Causes of Back and Spine Injuries During Chicago Car Accidents
- Back Injuries and Illinois Car Accidents
- Back Injury Statistics from Illinois Car Accidents
- The Financial Cost of Treating Back Injuries from Chicago Car Accidents
- The Best Back Injury Claims and Defenses in Illinois Lawsuits
- Chicago Car Accident Back Injury Awards and Settlement
- Get Legal Help Now from Attorneys Who Understand the Impact of Back Injuries Related to Auto Accidents
- Further Reading, Resources, and Cites
The Causes of Back and Spine Injuries During Chicago Car Accidents
Physics matter a lot with spinal injuries. Direction and velocity create the force that harms your back. Changes in any of them cause problems.
Car crashes push your back/spine forward. Seatbelts, airbags, or collisions snap your body around. This kinetic momentum can damage your spine. The whip-like motion compresses it and ruptures discs. This throws the whole back out of whack.
Blunt force trauma or sharp debris can break the spinal bones. Also, major nerves might be ripped open. They control communication from the brain and back to the body. The impact of these injuries can be debilitating. Here are some ways that it might change your life.
- Chronic pain. Pinched or exposed nerves might cause chronic pain. This comes with ruptured or herniated discs. The fluid between the discs isn’t there. Thus, nothing cushions the bones and nerves. Victims may never enjoy the same physical activities again. Flare ups and attacks can give them pain their whole lives.
- Motor function. Pinched nerves and damaged discs can damage motor function. Signals between the brain and body get interrupted. This causes a lot of problems. Mobility is reduced for many victims. Some injuries take motor function for some time. Others might take it completely.
- Cognitive function. Some damage to the upper spine may be accompanied by traumatic brain injuries. These cause lots of complications. You might see a loss in regulating memory, concentration, communication and motor function.
Back Injuries and Illinois Car Accidents
The spinal cord is an electric highway of nerves. It controls the human body. It provides motor and sensory-nerve functions. Its core structure is composed of bones. It is also made of tissues, ligaments, and nerves. Three layers of meninges surround and buffer it. They’re called dura mater, arachnoid mater, and pia mater.
The space between these layers envelops blood vessels, tissue, and fluids. The skeletal system has three main segments. The uppermost portion (7 vertebrae) involves the Cervical vertebrae. The middle portion (12 vertebrae) involves the Thoracic vertebrae. The lower portion (5 vertebrae) involves the Lumbar vertebrae. The cord also contains the Sacrum and Coccyx sections. These are beneath the Lumbar region. The following diagram displays the human spinal cord:
Car crash spine injuries come from fast speeds. This makes a sprain, strain, or compression fracture. Damage to the Thoracic region of the spine is the most serious. Yet, they all come with bruising, pain, loss of motion/feeling.
Spinal cord injuries might not appear for a long time. Thus, victims don’t know what treatment to request. They also don’t know how long the pain will last. Some of it might heal on its own. Some of it might need long-term care. You might even need surgery. Read these facts. They cover back injuries from car accidents.
Back Injury Statistics from Illinois Car Accidents
- Almost 500,000 people each year have a spinal cord injury. One-third of those are caused by car accidents.
- You can get a spinal injury at just 5 miles per hour.
- People with spinal cord injuries can be 5 times more likely to die prematurely.
- Most spinal cord injury victims are male and under 30.
- Causes of spinal cord injuries include sports, falls, and fighting.
- Nearly 50% of spinal cord injury victims do not have private insurance. These injuries often require months of hospital stays. Those stays can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical treatment.
Info regarding Illinois back injuries and car accidents:
The Financial Cost of Treating Back Injuries from Chicago Car Accidents
Some back injuries just need meds and PT. Others require surgery. Back surgery can be invasive and expensive. Also, it might not fix the real problem. Doctors may even suggest many rounds of surgery. This compounds the cost and pain. Here’s a full list of treatment options. Your Illinois car accident back pain might need them.
- Over the counter meds like Tylenol.
- Chiropractic care, attention.
- Electrothermal therapy, electrical nerve stimulation.
- Bioelectric blocking therapy.
- Physical therapy.
- Spinal therapy, stimulation.
The toll on these victims is even more. They need to concede to a life without mobility. Their families must help with their car. This can be quite expensive. The lifetime cost of care for a paralyzed person can surpass over $4.5 million. The large price tag is highlight because they cannot work again. At least, many paralyzed people can’t work again.
Rear-end collisions and lane departure accidents cause most injuries. Cars are involved in 70% of vehicle accidents with a spinal injury. You should see a doctor fast. These injuries worsen over time.
Also, they might not present symptoms initially. Record your expenses and treatment. This will preserve your claim. It will also make it easier to win in court! Do these things too.
- List your travels to/from medical appointments. You’ll want a travel log for the care needed from the accident.
- Ask your employer for a lost wages verification form.
- Request medical records from your primary care physician. You might also want records from other medical providers.
- Follow your doctor’s instructions carefully. Don’t waiver from what he/she tells you.
The Best Back Injury Claims and Defenses in Illinois Lawsuits
In Illinois auto accident cases, there are common claims and defenses. A lot of the points made in litigation appear similar. Success on these issues will determine if you win in court.
Back injuries are special. They require specific claims/allegations. Their complaints, motions, and arguments need tailoring.
Here are a few claims you might see. There is also some insight into how defendants normally oppose them. Plus, we’ll show you how you can respond to their defenses!
- Medical Bills. Every injury case in Illinois will include some request for damages. They will usually relate to medical bills. Back injury cases are complicated. Their claims are normally a bit higher on average. Thus, defendants will push back at this. They’ll argue that some or all of them are unnecessary. To defeat this, show how similar plaintiffs recovered. Use doctors’ testimony as to the adequacy of the treatments given.
- Pain and Suffering. Long-term pain is a big source of relief for these cases. The crux of this argument is that the injury will impair them for the long-term future. Thus, they should be compensated accordingly. Defendants will refute this contention. But they normally do this without concrete evidence. To strengthen your case, show how the incident eliminated your ability to do what you used to be able to do. Show examples from work, play, and other areas.
- Lost Income. Often, plaintiffs will seek lost income in these suits. This is so because their back injuries prevent them from being able to return to work and make a living. In response, defendants will commonly complain that this was a personal decision. They’ll say it was not related to the harms suffered in the car crash. However, this retort can be easily combated. Just offer evidence of the work routine and job demands. Combined with the injuries presented, this should show that the plaintiff’s requests are reasonable.
See how claims and defenses in these cases? They can affect your compensation by a lot. Yet, other issues arise in these suits too. To gain a better understanding, call our offices. We will highlight what you can do to maximize your recovery.
Chicago, IL Car Accident Back Injury Awards and Settlements
$639,000 Settlement; Kane County, Illinois; 2016:
The 44-year-old plaintiff was riding in the back of his friend’s car when they were rear-ended west of Chicago. He suffered herniated discs, back trauma, and facial lacerations-medical expenses totaling about $250,000.
Doctors diagnosed him with radiculopathy and spinal damage at LF and performed surgery on his spine and back. He had permanent damage to his back and needed long-term medical treatment (steroid injections). He settled with the driver’s insurance company for $639,000.
$239,000 Settlement; Chicago, Illinois; 2002:
A family was driving their passenger vehicle near Chicago when another motorist crossed the median and hit them head-on. The parents both suffered back injuries, herniated discs, and spinal damage. His were at the T6, T7, L4, and L5 spots. Hers were similarly positioned.
The accident resulted not in only in substantial pain for them but also substantial medical expenses and lost wages due to missed work. They sued the other driver but the claim was soon directed to that party’s insurance carrier. In the end, the family obtained $239,000 in financial compensation.
$500,000 Jury Award; Cook County; 2002:
The plaintiff, a pregnant woman in her late thirties, was being driven to work by her husband when the defendant’s motor vehicle sideswiped them. She herniated a disc (L5) and sustained other injuries to her back, arm, and neck. Also, the woman alleged that the other motorist aggravated pre-existed injuries.
The defendant denied this charges and liability for the event entirely. The two sides went to trial and the jury found for the woman. They awarded her $500,000 for suffering and pain ($300,000), disability ($170,000), aggravation ($20,000), and medical expenses ($10,000).
$100,000 Settlement; Chicago, Illinois; 2013:
The defendant blew threw a stop sign and t-boned the plaintiff’s car, a 34-year-old man. He broke his hip and damaged soft tissue in his back-totaling $11,000 in medical expenses.
The woman denied where the incident occurred but did not dispute overall fault. Therefore, counsel for the two sides both engaged in negotiations to settle the dispute. The man received $100,000 for his pain, suffering, and costs.
Get Legal Help Now from Attorneys Who Understand the Impact of Back Injuries Related to Chicago, Illinois Auto Accidents
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC stands up for car accident victims. We have a long record of success. We can give you a free consultation. This will identify what might be possible in court.
We can fight for your rights at no upfront cost. Make sure you do not miss a dime of compensation. Begin your recovery today! Call us now!
Learn about other Illinois auto accident injuries. Please read the following pages.
- Broken Bone Injuries in Illinois Automobile Accidents
- Wrongful Deaths in Illinois Automobile Accidents
- Herniated Disc Injuries in Illinois Automobile Accidents
- Facial Injuries in Illinois Automobile Accidents
- Knee Injuries in Illinois Automobile Accidents
- Brain Injuries in Illinois Automobile Accidents
Further Reading, Resources, and Cites
- Motor Vehicle Crash Deaths
- Cook County Jury Verdict Reporter
- Cervical Herniated Disc From an Auto Accident
- Accidents or Unintentional Injuries