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New York Gunshots

A spinal cord injury is an injury that cuts, bruises or causes any type of trauma to the bones or nerves that are part of the spinal cord. While spinal cord injuries are often associated with a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, construction accident or slip and fall accidents, approximately 10% of new spinal cord injuries each year in the United States are caused by gunshots. While some such injuries occur as a result of intentional criminal acts, others are due to negligent or accidental hunting accidents, accidents at shooting ranges, or due to some other type of accidental discharge. If you or a family member suffered a spinal cord injury due to the accidental or intentional discharge of a firearm, it is important that you contact an experienced New York Gunshots Lawyer as you may have the right to compensation for medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering through a personal injury claim.

Common Causes for Gunshot Injuries

With a gunshot injury, an intentional act of violence is often the first thing that comes to mind. However, many people are shot accidentally or through negligence.

Design or manufacturing defects. Just like a vehicle, a toy, or an appliance, guns are sometimes designed or manufactured poorly. When a gun unexpectedly discharges due a poor design or negligent manufacturing and as a result someone suffers a serious injury such as a spinal cord injury, the manufacturer of the gun can be held liable.

Accidental discharge. If someone accidentally discharges a firearm while cleaning it, transporting it, or while handling it for some other reason, and as a result you are shot and injured, then that person is legally liable for your injury. Accidental discharge can occur for a number of reasons such as failing to engage the safety, dropping the firearm, or grasping the firearm with a finger on the trigger.

Reckless use. Guns are not toys. However, sometimes people handle them as if there are playthings. For example, aiming a loaded gun at someone and pretending to shoot could result in the gun discharging. Similarly, playing “Russian roulette” with a loaded gun is reckless. Also, celebratory firing a gun into the air is both reckless and dangerous.

Spinal Cord Injury Symptoms

There are many types of spinal cord injuries that are the result of gunshots including paraplegia, quadriplegia, anterior cord syndrome, and posterior cord syndrome. While some spinal cord injuries cause paralysis, paralysis is not the only symptom of an injury to the spinal cord. Other symptoms include:

  • Pressure or pain in the back, head or neck
  • Poor coordination
  • Difficulty walking
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands, fingers, feet or toes
  • Bladder or bowel problems
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Muscle spasticity
Pursuing Compensation for a Spinal Cord Injury

Whether the spinal cord injury was the result of a construction accident, car accident, slip and fall accident or an act of violence, a severe spinal injury requires a long, painful course of treatment and period of recovery. Victims face significant medical expenses including fees associated with emergency room treatment, the hospital stay, treatment by doctors, physical therapy, assistive equipment, and medication. To make matters worse, while you are recovering you will not be able to work and earn an income to pay for your medical expenses and support your family.

Fortunately, if your spinal cord injury was due to the accidental or intentional act of another person, under New York law you have the right to pursue compensation through a personal injury claim. You may be able to recover both past and future medical expenses including hospital bills, expenses for surgery, rehabilitation fees, and fees for prescription medication. You may also be able to recover the cost of assistive equipment such as a wheelchair as well as modifications to your home to make it accessible. Furthermore, you may be able to recover both lost wages, loss of future earning capacity and pain and suffering.

Keep in mind that the person who accidentally or intentionally shot you may also face criminal charges under New York’s assault or homicide statutes.

New York Gunshots Lawyer

If you have suffered a spinal cord injury as a result of an intentional or accidental gunshot injury, contact our legal team as it is important you speak with an experienced attorney who understands both the legal issues associated with personal injury cases as well as the medical issues associated with spinal cord injuries and other serious injuries such as a brain injury. The staff at Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC is experienced in representing clients who have been injured by gunshots, in car accidents, in construction accidents, as well as in other types of accidents. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.