Three Indicators That You Have a Personal Injury Caseby Courtney Myers Professional Writer and Editor
If you’ve suffered a personal injury after a serious accident, you might be wondering what your next steps should be. While you should, first and foremost, be focused on getting better, it’s also important to know whether or not you should pursue legal action following your accident. Doing so can help you receive the compensation you need to cover your medical expenses, but understand that not every injury is a solid fit for a case.
Before you file a personal injury lawsuit to take your case to court, let’s review three signs that indicate this is the appropriate course of action. Remember that this type of lawsuit is one that is brought against the other party or parties responsible for your injuries. So, should you pursue it?
1. You suffered an injury to your person, not just your property.
The word “personal” is included in this law term for a reason. In order for a personal injury lawsuit to stand, you must have suffered an injury to your actual physical being or your mental state (your mind and emotions). As devastating as property damage is, it doesn’t quality in this case.
What does quality? Say you slipped and fell while out shopping in the grocery store where the floor was slick. You broke your leg and fractured your elbow. That’s a physical personal injury. Or, maybe you walked away from a car accident unscratched but are still suffering from nightmares and flashbacks. That’s a psychological one.
Yet, if the only damage caused was a bent fender or a hole in your sheetrock, your case won’t stand in court if you file a personal injury lawsuit. You may, however, be able to receive compensation through your insurance company to cover the extent of the damage.
2. Someone else’s negligence caused your injury.
Was your injury suffered at the hand of someone else’s negligence? If so, you may have a personal injury case. This simply means that you experienced your trauma because someone else was behaving in a careless way and as a result, you were harmed. In legal terms, that offending party is “liable” for your damages.
To put it into perspective, acting negligently means acting in a manner that someone else, acting carefully and reasonably would not have, if the circumstances been the same. There are four elements you will have to prove occurred before a person can be held liable for acting negligently against you, including:
Duty: The other party had a legal duty to perform a specific action or behave a certain way. He or she was obligated under law to do so.
Breach: This duty was not carried out and the other party failed to act in that way toward you.
Causation: You can directly link the offense to your injury; in other words, you know that the actions (or lack of action) performed by the other party is the cause behind your damages.
Damage: You were physically or psychologically harmed as a result of this negligence.
3. You require money to address your injury.
To file a personal injury lawsuit, your injuries must be remediable by something that can be obtained through payment, usually medical services. This payout is known as your “damages” and should be measurable against the extent of your injuries.
You may receive this money directly from the court, or your insurance company may be ordered to provide it to you. To help determine what the final sum should be, these entities will take into account details including:
The medical bills you accrued during your recovery
The pain (both mental and physical) you experienced after your injury
Professional wages you did not receive because you missed work as a result of your injury
Any disability adjustments needed to your home or vehicle
Your quality of life or lack thereof, and the loss of companionship
While economic figures, such as your lost wages and your medical bills, can be fairly straightforward to calculate and assign a dollar amount to, others, such as your loss of companionship and support, might not be. To that end, you can work with your personal injury lawyer to come up with an estimate that you both feel is reasonable.
If you answered “yes” to all of these above questions, you may have a solid case for a personal injury lawsuit. While you take these important next steps, be sure to partner with the right resources, ask any questions you may have, and ensure you understand every part of the process before moving on to the next. Then, you’ll be better able to approach your case with the knowledge, team, and research to win it.
Created on Jun 4th 2018 23:36. Viewed 433 times.