Do You Have Questions About A Personal Injury?
1. What Is A Typical Personal Injury Case?
Automobile accidents, the area in which most personal injury actions arise, provide a good example of how the tort system works. You have a negligence claim in a “fault” state if you are injured by a driver who failed to exercise reasonable care because drivers have a duty to exercise reasonable care anytime they are on the road. When they breach that duty and your injury results, personal injury law says you can recoup your losses. (Note, though, that the system may be very different in states that have passed no-fault laws.)
2. What happens if I file a lawsuit?
You become the plaintiff in the case and the person who injured you becomes the defendant. Lawyers for each side (and for the insurer) typically begin gathering facts through the exchange of documents, written questions (interrogatories) or depositions (questions that are asked in person and answered under oath). This process is called discovery. After discovery, many cases get settled before trial. Only a small percentage of personal injury actions ever go to trial.
3. What Will I Get If I Win My Case?
If you win, a judge or jury awards you money, known as damages, for your injuries. That amount can include compensation for such expenses as medical bills and lost wages, as well as compensation for future wage losses. It also can compensate you for physical pain and suffering. In addition, you may receive damages for any physical disfigurement or disability that resulted from your injury.
4. What Does It Mean To Settle A Case?
Settling a case means that you agree to accept money in return for dropping your action against the person who injured you. You’ll actually sign a release absolving the other side of any further liability. To help you decide whether to accept the settlement offer, your lawyer will be able to provide a realistic assessment of whether a lawsuit based on your claim will be successful. (Settlement also can take place at any point in a lawsuit once it is filed, including before trial or even after a case has been tried but before a jury reaches a verdict.) The decision to accept a settlement offer is yours, not the lawyer’s.
5. Why Do You Need A Personal Injury Attorney?
You are not legally required to have a lawyer handle your personal injury claim. You could file all the necessary paperwork and represent yourself in court. However, your chances for winning your case and getting the compensation you deserve are much higher if you hire an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Do You Have More Questions?
If you would like to learn more about personal injury or you think you may have a claim, please contact us to schedule a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Call 623-428-1923 to reach our Arizona office.