What is a Personal Injury Claim?
If you are the victim of any type of damage caused by another person, you may be entitled to compensation. Submitting a personal injury claim is a legal way to make the responsible party liable for these damages. Common examples of personal injury claims include car accidents, slip and falls, dog bites, and medical malpractice. To be successful in a personal injury claim, you must prove that you have suffered an injury or loss and that the responsible party owed you some type of duty. Learn more about personal injury claims, what exactly they entail, and what to do if you’ve been injured.
Proving a Personal Injury Claim
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be wondering if you have a personal injury claim. To be eligible for recovery for damages, there are several things you must prove in a court of law. First, you must prove that the responsible party was actually being negligent and his or her carelessness led to your injuries. For example, if a driver blew through a red light and crashed into your vehicle, the driver would most likely be considered negligent under the law.
Next, you must also prove that the responsible party’s negligence actually caused the personal injury. Using the example above, if the driver that ran the red light and crashed into your vehicle caused you to break your leg, the driver would likely be considered negligent and to have caused your injury.
Finally, you must prove that your injury resulted in harm. For example, if you had suffered a broken leg you would have medical bills that would need to be paid. You might also have to take off work, resulting in lost wages. Also don’t forget about pain and suffering. When these types of damages occur, they are referred to as compensatory damages.
What Types of Damages Are Covered
While most people associate personal injury claims with car accidents, there are actually many situations that could constitute a personal injury claim. The most common is in fact car accidents, which also include any accidents involving motorcycles, large trucks, or pedestrians. Another common cause of personal injury claims are animal injuries, such as dog bites. Slip and fall injuries, as well as other types of premises liability cases, may result in a personal injury claim if the responsible party can be found guilty of wrongdoing.
Personal injury claims can also be filed for consumer product liability cases. These may include situations in which a product or medication was defective or recalled. Damages can also occur from ultra-hazardous activities that cause injury, such as through exposure to chemicals or explosives. It’s also important to note that not all injuries are physical. Personal injury can also come in the form of defamation or even injuries to someone’s emotional or mental health. This may occur through the intentional infliction of emotional or mental distress or as the aftermath of a physical injury.
It’s also important to know not only what personal injury is but also what it’s not. Personal injury law focuses on injuries that are suffered by individual people. While a personal injury may also involve property damage, such as in the event of a car accident, personal injury law addresses the injury to the person first and the property damage second. Also know that strict liability applies to some situations instead of negligence. Under strict liability, a defendant who causes injury to a plaintiff is considered responsible no matter how careful the defendant claimed to be. This is common in certain types of cases, such as those involving ultra-hazardous activities or consumer product liability.
What to Do After a Personal Injury
Knowing how to handle a personal injury is key if you decide to file a claim later on. First, you’ll want to seek medical help directly after the accident occurs. Even if you are not sure if you’re seriously injured, it is still a good idea to get checked out by a medical professional. Remember, certain types of injuries may not show symptoms for several days, weeks, or even months, especially more complex injuries like brain damage. Following an accident, a doctor will perform a thorough examination and identify any injuries.
After seeing a healthcare provider, contact an attorney immediately. An experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer can walk you in the right direction to ensure that you don’t miss any crucial steps that could impact your personal injury claim. After listening to the details of the accident and the extent of your injuries, an attorney can tell you whether you have a valid claim. If you do, your attorney can begin investigating your claim and finding the best way to prove that your injuries were a direct result of another person’s negligence.
While speaking with your attorney, you will need to review the type of compensation that you can expect to receive if you are successful with your personal injury claim. If the other party is found negligent for your injuries, you may be entitled to compensation for doctor visits, medical equipment, prescriptions, and at-home care. You may also receive compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, and various punitive damages. If a loved was killed due to a serious personal injury caused by another person, you may be entitled to compensation for loss of life, funeral expenses and loss of companionship.
Contact an Experienced Law Firm Today
Personal injury claims can be complex and involve a number of serious lawsuits. To help ensure that you are taking the necessary steps to get the compensation you deserve for your injuries, it is wise to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney soon after the injury occurs. Having a knowledgeable professional represent you in court can significantly increase your odds of a successful outcome and can make the process go much more smoothly. For more information about personal injury claims or to speak with a personal injury lawyer in Atlanta, GA, contact The Dixon Firm today.