Personal Injury & Accident Law FAQs
Accidents happen, and many are just that - accidents, blameless and random. But in some cases, accidents and personal injury caused as a result of someone elses actions (or lack thereof) may warrant legal action by the injured party.
What is personal injury?
Personal injury refers to the areas of the law that cover any wrong or damage done to someones person, property, rights or reputation. A personal injury can occur in a traffic accident, in the workplace, during medical treatment, while using a faulty product, or even if you slip and fall on a wet floor. But to warrant legal action, it must be the result of some elses negligence or unreasonably unsafe actions, whether its your employer, a manufacturer, your doctor, or your landlord.
When does an accident lead to a personal injury claim?
If you have an accident, the first question you might ask is whether you have a personal injury case. You must have suffered an injury to your person or property, and that injury must be someone else's fault.
You dont necessarily need to have a physical injury to bring a personal injury lawsuit. Some personal injury legal claims can be based on harm or losses that arent physical. For example, you may have a case if someone has attacked your reputation, invaded your privacy, or inflicted emotional distress upon you.
When should you file a personal injury lawsuit?
Every state has a statute of limitations, or specific limit that governs the amount of time you have to file a personal injury lawsuit. In some states, the statute of limitations is as little as one year. If you miss the deadline for filing your case, you can lose your legal right to damages. So its important to talk with a personal injury lawyer soon after youve been injured.
How do you find a personal injury lawyer?
The two best ways to hire an attorney who practices in personal injury law are to ask for a referral from friends, acquaintances, or another lawyer, or to use a trusted resources like Attorneys.com. The important thing is to find an attorney who has experience handling cases like yours and who is someone with whom you are comfortable.
Once you find a lawyer, you should be prepared to provide him or her with any documents that might be relevant to your case. Police reports, copies of medical reports and bills from doctors and hospitals, and information about the insurer of the person who caused your injury are all helpful, as are any photographs you have of the accident scene, your property damage, and your injury.
How can I work with an insurance company on my personal injury claim?
One valuable service your attorney can provide is helping deal with insurance companies. Because insurance companies have an interest in settling injury claims as quickly and as economically as possible, an experienced lawyer can help you determine if a settlement offer is fair or if further negotiations or lawsuits are necessary. A qualified accident attorney can help you navigate the entire process without losing money to which you might be entitled.