20 May What is Personal Injury?
Under the legal definition of personal injury, a personal injury occurs when a person’s body, mind, or emotions are injured as a result of the negligence, carelessness, or wrongful conduct of another person. Personal injury law is also called tort law. The word tort comes from Latin and means harm or wrong, and tort law encompasses a broad variety of types of personal injury claims.
If you are injured and would like to file a personal injury lawsuit, you will need to prove that the defendant was negligent in order to hold him or her liable. In general, when someone acts in a reckless or careless manner and causes harm to someone else, his or her actions might be negligent. Personal injury plaintiffs must be able to prove that the conduct of the defendants met the elements of negligence in order to prevail in their cases.
The first element of a negligence claim is a duty. In order to prove this element, you must be able to show that the defendant in your case owed a legal duty to you under the circumstances. The duty may vary depending on your type of injury case.
After proving that the defendant owed you a duty, you must then show that the defendant’s actions constituted a breach of that duty. A breach may be shown either by the defendant’s actions or failures to act. Whether or not a breach occurred will be determined according to what a reasonable and prudent person would have done under the circumstances. If a reasonably prudent person would have known that his or her actions or failures to act might injure another person, a breach will likely be found.
The third element that you must be able to prove is causation. This means that you must show that the defendant’s breach caused your accident and the resulting injury.
The final element of negligence in a personal injury claim is harm. In order to prove this element, you must be able to show damages. There are several types of damages that you might be able to recover if your case meets the legal definition of personal injury. We will analyze your case and your injuries in order to value your claim and provide you with a range of values within which any reasonable settlement should be expected to fall. In general, the types of potential damages that might be recoverable in a personal injury claim include the following:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages or lost income
- Losses in your ability to earn a living
- Losses in your ability to enjoy life
- Pain and suffering, mental anguish, and psychological injury
- Losses for permanent disfigurement and scarring
If you believe that you might have valid grounds for filing a personal injury claim, it is important that you act quickly. There are statutes of limitations for filing these claims. If you fail to file your claim within the specified time period, you may be permanently barred from seeking a legal remedy for your losses. Contact us today to begin learning about your rights and explore your options.