If you are injured in any type of accident that someone else’s negligent actions caused, you can recover your financial losses. By filing a personal injury lawsuit, you may be able to receive compensation for certain damages.
You may be wondering what kind of injuries will warrant engaging in this legal process. Read on to discover what constitutes a personal injury, the common types of injuries in these cases, and what you may be able to claim for compensation.
What Is Considered as a Personal Injury?
Personal injury cases require the victim to have suffered some type of physical injury. While it can also involve property damage, there must have been physical harm involved in the incident.
A valid personal injury claim will also involve negligence on the part of the other party to hold them liable for the damages a victim has sustained. This is something the injured party needs to prove by showing that the other person owed them a duty of care.
In addition to showing that the at-fault party had a duty of care, victims must show this duty was breached. This breach of care must have caused your injuries and financial losses.
As an example, if you are in a car accident that someone else caused, the duty of care is easy to show. Every driver on the road is responsible for operating their vehicle in a safe and law-abiding manner. Perhaps the other driver breached this duty by texting while driving or being intoxicated.
You will need to provide evidence to show this was the case. In turn, it will reveal that these negligent actions caused them to crash into your vehicle, leading to your injuries and damages.
Types of Injuries in Personal Injury Lawsuits
A personal injury lawsuit can arise from an array of different situations from car accidents to medical malpractice. Any of these circumstances can lead to a variety of injuries, including but not limited to:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Broken bones
- Spinal cord injuries
- Loss of limbs
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Full or partial paralysis
Even those with minor injuries can file a personal injury lawsuit. However, you will not receive a massive windfall for injuries that will heal in time. You may be able to recover the financial losses through economic and non-economic damages to help restore your life to the condition you enjoyed before this event.
Economic Damages for Your Injuries in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
After sustaining an injury in an accident that someone else caused, you can recover economic damages. These refer to your financial losses and out-of-pocket expenses as a result of this accident.
Your economic losses will often include medical expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and property damage. Depending on the factors of your case, you may be able to recover other economic losses from your personal injury lawsuit. The best way to get back the money you have spent or will spend recovering from your injuries is by keeping your receipts and bills related to this incident to prove the true amount you lost. Along with these items, you should be prepared to use your pay stubs to show the income you missed from your injuries.
Non-Economic Damages for Your Injuries in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
While you must have sustained physical injuries to file a personal injury lawsuit, you may also have subjective losses that are not as easy to measure. These do not involve your out-of-pocket expenses.
These intangible losses often include pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, and unjust hardship. Since economic damages are easier to show, it helps to work with a personal injury attorney when calculating the extent of your non-economic damages.
Understanding the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Lawsuits in California
When you are hurt by another person’s careless actions, the first step will be to file a personal injury claim with their insurance company. Since California uses an at-fault model for insurance, the person or entity that caused your injuries would be held liable.
Often, situations arise where the insurer denies coverage or offers too little in a settlement. When this happens, it is ideal to file a personal injury lawsuit as quickly as possible. California puts a time limit in place for filing these types of lawsuits. In most cases, this provides you with two years from the date of your injuries — though there may be some exceptions that either shorten or extend this time frame.
Even if you had all the time in the world, waiting can hurt your case. Evidence often disappears with the passage of time and witnesses may have moved or be unavailable. If you are injured by someone else, you should pursue compensation soon after the incident to have the best chance at getting financial recovery.
How to Get the Right Level of Compensation for Your Injuries
Through personal injury lawsuits, you can get the compensation you deserve. California law also follows a comparative negligence model that may reduce your payout by your percentage of fault. You can still recover compensation even if you are found to be 99% at fault for your injuries. However, this will mean you receive less.It is important to discuss your case with a personal injury lawyer in Stockton to help you avoid incurring blame for injuries you did not cause. You should not be stuck with major medical bills or floundering financially all because of another person’s negligence.