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Fast Starts, Spine Injuries, and Lawyers in Brainerd, MN

by | Aug 20, 2019 | Firm News, Personal Injury

Teams that succeed in baseball usually start fast. Clubs which consistently do things like get the leadoff batter on base and record the first out of an inning usually win most of their games.

A serious spine injury is definitely no game. In 99 percent of these cases, the victim never recovers any significant mobility in the paralyzed area. However, extensive physical therapy, medical attention, and physical alterations like wheelchair ramps, usually make life livable. All these things cost money, and that is where an attorney comes into play.

Much like baseball teams, lawyers in Brainerd, MN also need fast starts to help ensure success. In a spine injury case, this success means compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills and physical changes, as well as noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering and emotional distress. Baseball teams start fast in the two ways mentioned above, and attorneys start fast in the two areas discussed below.

Theory of the Case

After a client consultation and a brief evidence review, top lawyers in Brainerd, MN usually develop a theory of the case. A sculptor can see a statute in a slab of marble before s/he starts chiseling it. Somewhat similarly, an attorney can see how a case should develop before doing any legal work.

Spine injuries usually involve one of the following kinds of negligence, and a vehicle collision is a good illustration of how this evaluation process works.

Ordinary Negligence

American schoolchildren once had to memorize the Golden Rule, which was “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” That moral principle is the basis of a negligence claim. In Minnesota, most drivers have a legal responsibility to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Vehicle operators must drive defensively and, as my grandfather used to say, look out for “th’ other fella.”

If drivers violate that duty, and the violation causes injury, the tortfeasors (negligent drivers) may be responsible for the damages laid out above.

Negligence Per Se

Sometimes, the law sets the standard of care. Speeding, failure to yield, and ignoring a traffic control device are three common traffic violations which sometimes cause vehicle collisions and spine injuries. In these cases, the tortfeasors may be liable for damages as a matter of law.

In serious injury claims, many tortfeasors do not have enough insurance to provide fair compensation. Minnesota has one of the lowest auto insurance minimum coverage requirements in the country. Fortunately, both negligence and negligence per se claims often involve third party liability. Some common theories include:

  • Respondeat Superior: Employers are legally responsible for any employee negligence which occurs during the scope of employment. This theory usually applies in truck crash cases. These large vehicles almost always cause spine injuries, serious burns, and other severe injuries.
  • Dram Shop: In Minnesota, commercial alcohol providers, like restaurants and bars, are responsible for damages if they illegally sell alcohol. These transactions include underage patrons, intoxicated patrons, and after-hours sales.
  • Owner Liability: Vehicle owners are responsible for damages if they allow incompetent drivers to use their vehicles and these drivers cause car crashes. Evidence of incompetency includes a safety-safety suspended drivers’ license, driving in violation of a license restriction, and a bad driving record.

These additional sources of recovery help spine injury victims get the resources they need to put their lives back together.

Lawyers in Brainerd, MN and Medical Attention

A surprising number of spine injury victims do not seek effective medical treatment. Often, the injuries overwhelm the doctor, who delivers a very grim prognosis. Victims then become fatalistic. They assume that nothing can be done, so they do not even try to get better.

But as mentioned above, effective medical treatment can improve the situation. So, lawyers in Brainerd, MN always connect victims with top spine injury doctors. These individuals know how to diagnose and treat these injuries.

This treatment is important, because paralysis comes in many forms. Whiplash is a good example. DUring car crashes, victims’ heads violently snap forward and backward, like cracking whips. This motion usually causes a spine or neck injury. Initially, the injury is so slight that many doctors do not see it. But eventually, untreated whiplash can cause partial paralysis.

Lawyers in Brainerd, MN arrange for victims to receive all this treatment at no upfront costs. Medical providers usually agree to defer billing until the case is resolved. Attorneys make similar arrangements with other vendors, like auto body shops and vehicle rental companies.

Reach Out to Dedicated Attorneys

A fast start is often the key to a successful end in a spine injury case. For a free consultation with experienced lawyers in Brainerd, MN, contact Carlson & Jones, P.A. We do not charge upfront legal fees in negligence cases.