Making a compensation claim for Paralysis

Paralysis can be permanent or temporary and can vary in severity depending on the type and affected area. Regardless, however, of the duration or the severity, it can be completely life-changing, with long-lasting effects on the sufferer and their loved one’s lives. It can stem from a range of accidents and it can also be treated in many different ways and require different alterations to the sufferer’s lifestyle so paralysis compensation claims can be very complex and can vary greatly from case to case.

Causes of paralysis

Paralysis tends to stem from serious accidents involving falls or heavy impacts, but it can also stem from other incidents such as the severing of nerves and so on. The main causes of paralysis include:

  • Accidents in the workplace
  • Road traffic accident
  • Slips, trips and falls involving heights or heavy impacts
  • Medical negligence

Of course, less severe, temporary paralysis can come from more minor incidents, although the above are the most common.

Types of paralysis

There can be many different types of paralysis arising from the accidents mentioned above. We’ve listed some of the most common below to help you understand the medical jargon.

  • Localised paralysis. This is where the paralysis affects just one specific part of the body, often caused by nerve damage. It can affect areas such as a foot, an arm or the face.
  • Generalised paralysis. This is where the paralysis affects a larger part of the body.
  • Monoplegia. This is where just one limb is paralysed either permanently or temporarily.
  • Hemiplegia. This is where one side of the body is paralysed, affecting an arm and a leg.
  • Paraplegia. This is a condition where both legs are paralysed. This can include the pelvis, abdomen or anything below the chest.
  • Tetraplegia. The most severe form of paralysis, this is where both arms and legs are paralysed, often leaving the sufferer with only the use of their head and, in some cases, neck.

Consequences of paralysis

Whether paralysis is temporary or permanent, the affects can be long-term and very serious for both the sufferer and their family. Depending on the type and duration of the paralysis, they can include:

  • Loss of income. Paralysis can leave the sufferer either temporarily or permanently unable to work which can make a great change to the family finances. Loved ones may also have to give up work in order to care for the sufferer, meaning further income is lost at a difficult and costly time.
  • Reliance on carers. As well as loved ones potentially needing to give up work, a nurse or carer may need to be employed to look after the needs of the sufferer.
  • Ongoing hospital treatment or rehabilitation. This can be a huge change for the sufferer as they may find themselves undergoing long-term hospital treatment, physiotherapy or rehabilitation.
  • Lifestyle changes. The alterations to lifestyle arising from paralysis can be enormous. They can include moving house or making renovations to allow for some degree of independent living, buying a new car that can accommodate a wheelchair, giving up hobbies and interests, and adapting to a whole new way of life.
  • Emotional issues. Enduring paralysis of any kind can have a big impact on the sufferer’s mental health. It’s a huge adjustment, one that can leave emotional scars and mental health problems if the sufferer does not receive appropriate care.

The above are some of the more usual consequences, although these can be unique to the sufferer’s personal circumstances.

Can compensation help?

Some people believe claiming compensation in these circumstances isn’t worth it because it can’t undo the effects of the paralysis. While that may be true to an extent, compensation can help in other ways, by easing the financial burden of lost income, employing carers and changes to your lifestyle. It can also help pay for the best possible treatment and go some way to alleviating the psychological impact.

As this type of personal injury claim can be for a huge sum, a personal injury trust can be used so that the award does not interfere with welfare benefits that the sufferer may well be entitled to.

Luke Curran Solicitors in Newry have the experience to offer expert advice to you on your eligibility for your paralysis compensation claim and guide you through the process from start to finish while showing compassion and understanding. Call our team today on +44 (0)28 302 67134 or email