Understanding the Personal Injury & Accident Claims Process

Recovery from an injury accident often involves legal action to obtain fair compensation from the person or company responsible for the harm they caused you due to their negligent behavior. A sudden traffic accident, a slip and fall accident, discrimination and other types of personal harm can not only disrupt your normal lifestyle, it can cause you great financial difficulty.

Making a Personal Injury Claim against the party that caused your injuries can aid your recovery and reduce that financial burden. Understanding the Personal Injury Claims process before you get started is a helpful starting point for action.

The Personal Injury Claims Process

The Personal Injury claims process is a method that allows the injured party to present their damage claims, get a response from the defendant, and then the matter either is settled or moves into a court for judgment. It begins as soon as you are harmed. For example, if you are hurt in a traffic accident, you most likely will receive immediate medical attention and there would be a police report with details of the accident. Statements would be taken from all involved parties and any eye-witnesses to the event.

This activity is similar to what would happen in many other bodily injury accidents, such as a slip and fall in a store or an on-the-job injury. Other events that cause personal harm may not be as clear-cut. Discrimination claims, harm to reputation, psychological damage and other less physical events still cause harm, but may not be as easy to outline and verify.

The Process Continues

Once harm has occurred, the next step in the process is to collect as much information about the event as possible. This might include police reports, medical/doctor reports, and other information about the event and your bodily injuries, along with details of the event and how it happened. Notification should be given to an employer if you are hurt while working and to any business or property owner if you are harmed at their location.

Now it is time to file your claim. You may do this yourself in many situations, but it is far better to consult with an experienced Personal Injury Attorney. This gives you the best possible opportunity to speed up the process and obtain maximum results. The attorney knows what documents need to be filed and they understand the court systems and statutes of limitation that apply.

Your legal counsel will work closely with you to help you meet all deadlines for responses and court appearances. They can negotiate for you with the opposing party and frequently an agreement is finalized with a settlement offer instead of courtroom litigation. If the case does go to court, an experienced lawyer will create and present an excellent case argument for you.

The pattern of activity in a Personal Injury Lawsuit is composed of several elements:

  • The Event
  • Gathering Evidence – Fact Finding/Discovery
  • Filing a Complaint – Making Claims – within any Statute of Limitations
  • Summons Served to Defendant
  • Defendant Answers
  • Counterclaims by Defendant, Answer from Plaintiff
  • Cross-Claims by Others – if any
  • Third-Party Claims – if any
  • Arbitration/Negotiation/Settlement
  • Court Litigation, Trial & Judgment
  • Collection
  • Appeals

Basics of Personal Injury Lawsuits

Personal Injury Lawsuits are fairly easy to understand. Someone is harmed because another person or company exhibits careless and negligent behavior. The injured party suffers and their life is changed, their finances depleted because of this accident or deliberate attack. They use the legal system to make damage claims and gain fair monetary compensation from the party or parties responsible for the accident and their injuries. A deal is made or the case moves into a courtroom to be heard by a judge and/or jury. There is a judgment; the defendant usually is ordered to pay compensation to the plaintiff. Next comes collection of the award and payment to the plaintiff, or there could be an appeal of the judgment.

Negligence is one of the most important elements of personal injury lawsuits. Everyone has a duty of care to behave in a manner that will not be harmful to anyone else. A manufacturer’s duty is to create a product that is safe and reliable. Installers of equipment must do their job properly, so there is no failure during use of that equipment. Property owners must maintain premises in safe conditions for visitors or passersby. Employers must be fair in hiring, promotion and disciplinary actions. Drivers of vehicles must take care to follow traffic laws and drive safely. And so it goes to every activity. If someone neglects their duty of care, another person or persons may be injured or killed. When this happens, personal injury regulations offer the opportunity to obtain some type of satisfaction and repayment for harm in monetary terms.

To win compensation, liability, fault for the injury must be proven. This may require deep digging into evidence and supporting reports of the accident to verify responsibility for the harm done. An experienced Personal Injury Attorney understands all the details of making claims and presenting a winning case for their client.

Personal Injury Attorney

A Personal Injury Attorney is a trained legal professional who focuses their work on this area of law. Every state has different regulations, so it is best to select an attorney from the state in which the accident occurred. Documents for damage claims must be filed in a timely manner; each state has time limits called a Statute of Limitations. If your claim is not made within this time frame, you most likely will not be able to pursue compensation for your injury expenses, work loss and other damages due to that harm.

Your attorney of choice should have a long track record of winning similar cases. This helps your case and your opportunity to gain maximum compensation in a cost-efficient manner. Experience is vital to winning. Our Personal Injury Attorney has an excellent record of success in this area of law. Call today to arrange for a free consultation to discuss your concerns and to answer questions you may still have about filing a Personal Injury claim.