What Type of Case is Personal Injury?
A personal injury case is a tort, and a tort is a wrongful act that results in harm to another person. An individual, business, or an employee could cause injury to another person. Personal injury cases could get complicated, so you should always retain a lawyer for personal injury claims, even something you might believe is small.
Cases that fall under the broad umbrella of personal injury include:
- Criminal acts that cause injury, including assault, battery, DUI and domestic violence;
- Injuries to children at school or daycare;
- Injuries suffered while playing sports or taking part in other recreational activities;
- Work-related injuries;
- Wrongful death cases, including nursing home deaths, car accident fatalities, and medical malpractice;
- Dog bites;
- Vehicle accidents; and
- Product liability.
A simple personal injury definition is that a person was injured because of the actions or inactions of another person or entity.
How to Make a Personal Injury Claim
The best way to make a personal injury claim is to contact a personal injury law attorney. When the attorney reviews your case, he or she will advise you as to whether you should try to settle or litigate the matter. Since it costs less to settle a claim than it does to litigate a claim, less for extenuating circumstances, you should try to settle first. The first step in a settlement is to write a demand letter. The letter may be ignored or you may get a response with a counter offer.
If the counteroffer is too low, you have two choices: Send another offer or let the defendant know that you will be taking the matter to trial. The defendant’s attorney may ask for discovery, even during settlement proceedings. You will have to provide documents that are requested. These usually include medical bills and other documents relating to the incident.
If you plan on going straight to litigation, you need to have all the pertinent information. Once you file a lawsuit, you can’t add more requests. For example, if you file a lawsuit, then three months later, you learn that you will need physical therapy for the next three years, but didn’t ask for future medical bills in the original lawsuit, you won’t be able to add that in.
Documents you may need for settlement purposes and/or litigation might include:
- Police report if the authorities were called, such as in a vehicle accident or a dog bite accident;
- Any video that may have been taken, whether from security cameras or cell phones, of the incident;
- A financial affidavit;
- Doctors’ notes and other medical documents regarding your diagnosis, current care, and future care; and
- Bills and invoices from hospitals, doctors, vehicle repair shops and other third parties that provided you services related to the accident.
- Pictures of the accident, if possible.
If you are filing a lawsuit, your attorney will draft a “complaint” with all the facts relating to the incident and will ask the court to award you compensation.
When to Call a Personal Injury Lawyer
Though many people may tell you that you don’t need to hire a personal injury lawyer, it’s always a good idea to at the very least, schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss your case, your rights and the benefits of using a lawyer. Don't rely on your insurance company to provide personal injury protection. Remember, they going to watch out for their bottom line, which means they will offer you the least amount possible to make you happy.
When you schedule a consultation, bring copies of any documents, videos, and pictures you have that you think might be helpful. If you don’t know how to get a specific document or are having trouble getting the information you need, the attorney will help you get it.
You should contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. If you are a relative contacting a wrongful death attorney on behalf of a loved one, you should also contact the attorney as soon as possible, especially if you were a witness to the event that caused the death.
Contact Wallace and Graham
If you have suffered an injury because of the actions or inactions of another person or entity, contact Wallace and Graham as soon as possible to set up a consultation.
0 comments on "What Type of Case is Personal Injury?"