If you have suffered a personal injury, you may be entitled to compensation for your injury. Legal responsibility, called “liability,” revolves around the simple fact that most injuries happen because someone was careless or “negligent” and hence coming under the legal status of “negligence”. Even if you believe you may have partly caused your own injury, in most states you can still get some compensation from anyone else who was also careless and partly responsible for your injury.
There are several factors that affect the potential success and value of a personal injury claim. Such factors include the ability to prove the fault of another for your injury and the nature and extent of your injuries.
If you suspect you may have a legal claim, you should contact a personal injury attorney for an evaluation of your case. Personal injury lawyers are experienced with cases like yours and can tell you at the outset whether it is worthwhile to pursue legal action of your lawsuit.
If you are unlikely to prevail, your attorney will tell you so, and you will not need to incur the time and expense of pursuing an unpromising claim. In pursuing personal injury claims, attorneys work with investigators and experts in specialized areas, who can skillfully investigate the technical and medical aspects of your case. More importantly, a personal injury attorney can work through the maze of paperwork necessary to resolve your claim so that you can get on with your life.
Steps You Can Take Now
Writing down as much as you can about the accident or injury itself, your personal injuries and any other losses (such as wages) you’ve suffered as a result of the accident.
Making notes of conversations that you have with people involved in the accident or the injury claim.
Preserving evidence of who caused the accident and what damage was done by collecting physical evidence and taking photographs.
Locating people who witnessed the accident and who might be able to help you prove your case.
Notifying anyone you think might be responsible for your injuries of your intention to file a claim for your injuries, especially if a government agency or employee may be involved.
How Much is Your Personal Injury Claim Worth
Determining how much certain injuries are worth is a critical aspect of any personal injury claim. It is also the part of a claim about which it is most difficult to generalize; the amount depends on your very particular circumstances. A personal injury attorney can be more objective about your case than you can, and will not make a rash decision concerning your lawsuit. Where you may be tempted, for instance, to go for a quick payout, your injury attorney may counsel you that it is in your best interests to wait for a more appropriate offer. Lawyers are used to working with insurance companies, and will not be confused by their tactics or feel pressured to settle for an unsatisfactory amount. Personal injury lawyers work hard to reach the best settlements for their clients, as early in the litigation process as possible.
Possible Jury Verdicts
If a trial becomes necessary, a personal injury lawyer can zealously represent you in court and work toward achieving the best possible jury verdict in your favor, including:
- Medical care and related expenses
- Income lost because of the accident, because of time spent unable to work or undergoing treatment for injuries, permanent physical disability or disfigurement
- Loss of family, social and educational experiences, including missed school or training, vacation or recreation, or a special event
- Emotional damages, such as stress, embarrassment, depression or strains on family relationships, for example, the inability to take care of children, anxiety over the effects of an accident on an unborn child, or interference with sexual relations
- Damaged property
Also, the following guidelines usually applied:
- The more painful the injury, the higher the potential damages you may recover.
- The more invasive and longlasting the medical treatment, the higher potential damages you may recover.
- The more obvious the medical evidence of the injury, the higher potential damages you may recover.
- The longer the recovery period, the higher potential damages you may recover.
- The more serious and visible any permanent effect of the injury, the higher potential damages you may recover.