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Of all the kinds of injuries a person might suffer, damage to the spinal cord could have some of the most severe impacts on their personal, professional, and financial livelihood. Along with current and future medical care, an injured person may also require multiple surgeries, extensive rehabilitation, and modifications to their home or mode of transportation.

In addition to these economic damages, they might also incur emotional trauma, such as loss of enjoyment of life and mental anguish. If you have suffered damage to the spinal cord as the result of someone’s careless or reckless behavior, a Raleigh spinal cord injury lawyer might be able to help.

Before pursuing a claim, there is important information to understand regarding how fault is determined in injury claims. A seasoned injury attorney could work to asses the facts of your case, explain your legal rights, and determine if you could hold at-fault parties accountable.

Contributory Negligence in Raleigh

A common defense tactic used in spinal cord injury cases is to allege that the plaintiff is to blame—or is partially to blame —for their injuries. For example, if the injury occurred from an automobile accident, the defendant might attempt to show to a jury that the plaintiff was speeding, ran a red light, did not have working lights or brake lights, or committed some other traffic infraction that led to their own injuries.

The jury would then be left to determine if the plaintiff was liable and if so, what their percentage of liability is. North Carolina subscribes to the modified comparative negligence rule, which means that if a plaintiff is found to be more than 50 percent liable, they cannot recover for their injuries.

If they are less than 50 percent liable, however, their damages would be proportionately reduced by their percentage of fault. This means if they were deemed to be 20 percent liable, they would only be able to recover 80 percent of the damages owed. A dedicated lawyer could help to explain how comparative negligence may affect a person’s spinal cord injury claim in Raleigh.

Joint and Several Liability in Spinal Cord Injury Cases

Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute § 1B-2, the state abides by the legal theories of joint and several liability in injury cases involving multiple defendants. This means that unless one defendant intentionally committed a malicious act, defendants who pay more than their fair share of the plaintiff’s damages are entitled to contribution from other liable parties.

This system could become complex, however, especially for an underrepresented claimant. A knowledgeable Raleigh spinal cord injury attorney could further explain how the modified comparative negligence rule and joint and several liability may impact a potential plaintiff’s case.

What is the Statute of Limitations for Spinal Cord Injury Claims?

A statute of limitations is a law that provides plaintiffs a specific amount of time to file their lawsuit. As found in N.C.G.S §1-52, the timeframe for filing a civil lawsuit is three years from the date of the incident which caused an injury.

If the plaintiff does not file a lawsuit by this deadline, it may be detrimental to their chances for recovering damages—this is because, if a lawsuit is filed after this statute has passed, the defendant might request a dismissal. A proactive spinal cord injury attorney could work to ensure that a claim satisfies the statute of limitations in Raleigh.

Contact a Raleigh Spinal Cord Injury Attorney for Help

After suffering severe trauma, you might be worried about your wellbeing and unsure of how to proceed. However, if your injuries were due to someone else’s negligence, you might consider contacting a Raleigh spinal cord lawyer about your right to seek recovery.

By filing a claim, you could request compensation to help with medical bills, lost wages, and any resulting emotional trauma from your injuries. By retaining a compassionate injury attorney, you could rest assured knowing a skilled legal professional is working on every step of your claim. To learn more about your legal options, call today.