Nobody wants to find themselves in a position where they are injured as a result of another person’s negligence, but this unfortunate event can happen quite often. When it occurs, many people assume that there is nothing they can do to rectify the situation and that they need to simply accept their injuries. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
A personal injury lawsuit may be a viable course of action depending on the details of your specific case. However, this type of law is often undiscussed which can lead many people to not be aware that it exists. Learn everything there is to know about a personal injury lawsuit to determine if filing one is the right choice for you.
What is Personal Injury Law?
For those who may be unfamiliar with personal injury, it is a subset of tort law as outlined by the American Bar Association’s repository of definitions. This form of law deals with rectifying wrongdoing to a person or their property on behalf of another person or group. This process occurs via a lawsuit, with the injured party suing the other party for damages which are typically requests for monetary compensation.
Common Types of Personal Injury
Even with the definition of personal injury outlined above, it can be challenging to understand what actually qualifies as a personal injury case. Each of the following situations are some of the most common examples of personal injury:
- Medical malpractice incidents involving healthcare professionals
- Off-leash animal attacks that are unprompted
- Slip-and-fall accidents in a public location
- Vehicle-on-vehicle or vehicle-on-pedestrian accidents
- Wrongful death cases
- Product defectiveness-related injuries
Even if your specific situation doesn’t line up perfectly with one of the above examples, it’s worth contacting a personal injury lawyer regarding your case to see if you can file a lawsuit.
How Much Can You Win in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Determining whether or not to go through the motions of filing a personal injury lawsuit could understandably come down to figuring out how much a person can earn. While the majority of personal injury lawsuit payouts fall somewhere around $30,000 as a median, some personal injury lawsuits, such as medical malpractice, can have payouts that are in the hundreds of thousands depending on the details. At the end of the day, choosing to not pursue a personal injury lawsuit may simply be leaving money on the table, which is why discussing the details of your case with a lawyer is so important.
Proving Personal Injury 101
For those who are considering filing a personal injury lawsuit, understanding how to prove your side of the case is important. While a lawyer can assist with the finer details, each of the following three points must be proven:
1. Duty of Care
First and foremost, it must be shown that the party who caused the incident had a duty of care to keep themselves and others out of harm’s way through reasonable behavior. As a common example, a pet owner who owns a pet with a violent background and poor history with strangers has an obligation to keep their animal on a leash at all times if they know the pet is dangerous.
2. Breach of Duty of Care
After the duty of care mentioned above has been established, it must then be shown that there was a breach of the duty of care. Sticking with the same example as before, that aforementioned pet owner choosing to allow their animal off-leash in a crowded location with many stimulants for the pet would likely qualify as a breach of their duty of care.
Finally, causation must be shown in the situation, which means a relation between the breach of duty of care and the accident that resulted in the plaintiff’s injury. After all, a person cannot sue another person for unrelated injuries. If the pet that the owner allowed off-leash in the prior example chose to attack a stranger for no reason at all, there would be causation between the events.
The Bottom Line
A personal injury lawsuit will never be a surefire lawsuit that a person can win. However, with the help of an accredited personal injury attorney, anybody can stand a strong chance at succeeding with their case. Think about what actually occurred prior to your injury and who caused that injury to determine whether or not your case qualifies for personal injury. Assuming it goes, don’t hesitate to reach out to a personal injury lawyer in your area.