If you suffer a spinal injury in a car crash, it is crucial to understand the full extent of how this could affect your life. Only then can you set an appropriate compensation target.
Insurance companies have far more experience calculating injury costs than you will. Therefore, they may try to get in early with a tempting offer because they know the true amount you need could be much more.
Here are three things to consider:
- It may limit your ability to work
There are certainly people with significant mobility issues who perform highly and earn a good wage. For example, the scientist Stephen Hawking spent 55 years paralyzed and in a wheelchair. Yet, it depends on what your job is. If, for instance, you work in construction or some other physical role, you may need to retrain. Sometimes the pain can limit how much you can work. Spinal injuries can also harm your mental abilities, further restricting your earnings.
- You may require long term help
Depending on the extent of your injuries, you may require daily help to attend to tasks you once did alone. The cost of this will mount up.
- You could incur massive medical costs
You may need surgery, extensive therapy and rehabilitation, plus painkillers or other drugs for the rest of your life. One study puts the lifetime cost of a spinal injury to a 25-year-old at between $1.5 and $4.8 million for healthcare and living expenses alone.
- It will affect your quality of life
You can go on to lead a rich and fulfilling life. Yet, it will be very different from that before your injury. Some adapt to this better than others. Many suffer mental health issues as they struggle to cope with the loss or relive the trauma of the crash. That, in turn, can affect your relationships with family and friends.
While the other driver probably did not mean to harm you, the fact is they did, and you have to live with the consequences. Getting adequate compensation will not change that, but it will ensure you do not have to pay for the financial consequences.