Your spine is a complicated structure of bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles that work together to provide strength and support to the rest of your body. As a result, neck and back injuries tend to impact day-to-day functioning more than other types of injuries.
If you suffer a neck or back injury while working or because of someone else’s actions, you may be able to receive compensation to help minimize the financial impact of your injury.
Neck and back injuries are often minor (such as a “crick” in the neck) that resolve quickly after a brief period of rest. But some neck and back injuries may require treatment, such as:
The Mayo Clinic encourages you to see a doctor when your pain:
What’s more, you should seek immediate care if the pain:
Almost every adult experiences neck or back pain at some point. This is part of getting older. Often, the pain is the result of strenuous activity or some medical condition (such as arthritis or osteoporosis).
But sometimes, neck and back injuries are caused by the trauma of an accident or intentional act. Common examples include:
If your injury is the result of someone else’s negligence or intentional act, you might be able to recover damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit in Tennessee.
In Tennessee, you must prove 3 elements to establish negligence:
Let’s take a look at a common example of negligence—distracted driving:
If someone intentionally causes your neck or back injury (for example, by committing battery or assault), you can file a personal injury lawsuit against them in civil court for your damages.
Keep in mind that when someone intentionally causes an injury, the person is often charged criminally. Nevertheless, to recover damages, you’ll need to file a civil lawsuit against the person regardless of any criminal proceedings.
If you suffered a neck or back injury as a result of a workplace accident, you may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim.
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that pays financial benefits to employees who are injured while performing a work task.
Most neck and back injuries are covered so long as the injury occurred during the “course and scope” of employment. What’s more, unlike personal injury lawsuits, you don’t need to prove that anyone was at fault for your injury.
Neck and back injuries can be financially crippling.
At the very least, you’ll most likely incur the cost of seeing your primary care physician. Depending on the severity of your injury, you may also incur the cost of ambulatory services, medical specialists, surgical procedures, prescription medication, and rehabilitation.
What’s more, your injury may cause you to lose wages and miss out on the activities you normally enjoy doing.
Fortunately, you can recover damages for your economic losses (monetary losses) and non-economic losses (non-monetary losses) in Tennessee. Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s included in each of these categories:
|Economic damages||Non-economic damages|
You may also be able to receive up to $500,000 in punitive damages if the person who caused your injury acted maliciously (intentionally) or recklessly (with gross negligence).
If you suffer a neck or back injury, whether it occurs at work or is the result of someone’s carelessness or intentional act, you may benefit from the help of an attorney.
Many people don’t realize that most initial consultations are free. During a typical initial consultation, the attorney will tell you whether they believe you have a legitimate claim. They should also give you some idea of what steps they’ll need to take and how much it will cost. You’ll have the opportunity to ask the attorney questions so that you can decide whether they’re the right attorney for you.
To get the most out of your initial consultation, take a look at the following articles: