A look into the personal injury cases that an attorney can handle
3rd November 2018
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There have been so many times in our childhood and adulthood that we have gotten hurt due to someone else’s actions. While falling, bruising a knee and getting small cuts were parts and parcel of childhood, the nature of injuries change as we grow up. There are cases when people experience severe pain, loss, and damage due to someone else's negligence. Whether it was someone's faulty design, lack of knowledge, lack of care or deliberate malice, people get hurt all the time. There are times when the damage is more than a scraped knee, and it is necessary for the victim of that situation to speak up and demand compensation for the harassment he or she has faced.

What are some of the typical personal injury cases attorney handle every day?

Hundreds of situations can lead to personal injury litigations. Let us take a look at some of the most common personal injury cases –

Medical malpractice – medical malpractice lawsuits are rising by the day. About 1 in 14 doctors in California face malpractice lawsuits every year. However, only a meager 22% of these lawsuits end in payouts. In the event of medical malpractice, you have to send 90-days notice to the defendant before filing it in court. The intricacies make these types of lawsuits complicated to win.

Car accidents – car accidents are the most common personal injury cases in the US. There were over 56,000 car accidents in Los Angeles in 2018. In a majority of the cases, it was a result of reckless driving or the negligence of traffic rules by the other party involved. The court can hold the careless driver liable for the injuries after the car accident. However, that would depend on the state. Some states do have the "no-fault" status, but California is not one of them. According to it, the injured party has to collect compensation from their insurer except in cases of serious injuries.

Dog bites – the court usually holds the owners of a dog financially responsible for the injuries their canine friend causes. The exact laws vary between states. In California, the owner is responsible for the injuries financially, even if the dog has never shown aggression in the past. California has led other states in dog bite fatalities in 2016, so the laws are always in favor of the victim rather than the owner.

Slip and fall – it is a prevalent personal injury type. Owners of the property or the rental parties have the responsibility of keeping the premises in safe conditions. They should remove hazardous materials and put up signs where there are chances of accidents. That ensures that people living on the property and guests do not face mishaps. Not all slip and fall cases on private property lead to liability, but these are situations where such accidents call for personal injury lawsuits. The nature of the property owner’s duties varies depending on the state.

Defamation: Libel and slander – libel or slander is a form of defamation of character due to which the victim can suffer emotional distress, trauma and sustain an injury to his or her reputation. The exact nature of the slander can vary depending on the plaintiff, and the forum of the trial. In contrast to that, public figures and celebrities need to prove malice in court for winning a defamation lawsuit. Public figures need to work significantly more towards establishing that the accused made the statement in reckless disregard or with an intention to hurt the social standing of the personality.

Assault, battery and intentional torts – Intentional torts are not accidental cases or results of carelessness. These are the results of deliberate actions of individuals with the intention to hurt and cause damage. In multiple intentional personal injury incidents, there is the presence of criminal charges. That usually happens when a person intentionally attacks another. That falls under the purview of the criminal court, but the claimant can file a personal injury lawsuit for the compensation for his or her injuries in the civil court.

Other most common causes of personal injury in the state of California include dangerous drugs, products liability, workplace accidents, wrongful deaths, and products liability.

Since the nature of incidents can vary significantly from one case to another, the types of bodily injury remain variable as well. They might all result from negligent acts or intentional actions, but they result in some of the following types of damage –

  • Brain injury resulting in a concussion
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Injuries of the spinal cord resulting in paralysis
  • Injuries of the skeletal system
  • Injuries of the back and neck (muscular injuries)
  • Damage of internal organs
  • Whiplash
  • Burns (varying degrees)

The nature of your injury will determine the compensation. You can learn more about the details on the website of a reputable and reliable personal injury attorney in California.

How does a personal injury law attorney prove a negligence claim?

The exact nature of the law definitely varies from one state to another, but currently, there are two types of evidence that the prosecutor uses –

  • Direct evidence
  • Circumstantial evidence

Direct evidence under California law includes the details the attorney and his or her team collects from the witness. Any CCTV footage, car camera footage and images with or without timestamps can also qualify as direct evidence.

Circumstantial evidence includes details that do not prove negligence directly. There are cases where a person may not have intentionally hurt the claimant, but his or her acts of negligence made the injury inevitable.

To learn more about the collection of evidence for your personal injury claim, visit the Personal Injury Attorney Los Angeleswebsite.

How should you proceed with a personal injury claim?

It may feel tempting to neglect the first few symptoms of any injury since they might not seem truly bothersome, but a few types of internal injuries rarely show prominent external signs. However, the condition of the victim worsens over time. These types of injuries include brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, hairline fractures, and muscle tears.

It is crucial for the survivor of an accident to seek medical assistance immediately. You should head to a clinic or a hospital in or around Los Angeles if that is the location of the incident. You can seek therapy, surgery, and post-surgical trauma therapy, remember to save the opinions of the doctors in writing, the bills of every small and large procedure, documentation regarding the extent of the injury and the distress it has caused.

These documents will serve as the proof of the injury. The only thing that can strengthen your side of the trial is the presence of tangible evidence including photos, videos, and lists of witnesses. It only makes sense to save all insurance and medical documents. They all serve as the proof of the injury.

What compensation should you expect from the liable parties?

All personal injury types can attract one of the two types of compensatory damages – general damages and specific damages.

General damages

According to the California court of law, general damages are applicable when money is a rough substitute for the losses. This monetary away can help the victim recover their health, social position, and financial status. Other general damages exist that require the defendant to pay for the plaintiff's ongoing treatments, surgeries, and therapy. A few factors determine the value of the general damages, including –

  • The level of pain and suffering due to the injury
  • The severity of the wounds
  • All pre-existing medical conditions
  • Any future medical prognosis depending on the injury

Specific damages

Special damages aka specific damages can compensate for the grossly measurable monetary loss resulting from the injury. Special damages take into account the past loss of wages due to the injury and the future loss of employment due to disability or inability to work. It also accounts for the medical bills and other consequential expenses for deciding the damages. The amount usually depends upon –

  • The cost of the medical procedures and other medical bills
  • The effect of the injuries on your working ability
  • The influence of the accident on your lifestyle

What are punitive damages?

In the case of personal injury cases, you can expect another type of compensation – punitive damages. In California, these are a form of punishment for the liable party. It usually happens when the defendant’s behavior is malicious or reckless. The plaintiff can recover these in certain circumstances only. Unlike the general damages and special damages, the punitive damages penalize the accused of their behavior contributing to the accident. The nature of the injury or the degree of suffering usually does not influence the value of the punitive damages.

What should you do to hire personal injury attorneys?

Personal injury can occur due to several reasons. Sometimes, it is due to the factors we have mentioned above, but many ongoing cases defy these norms. Personal injury laws are intricate, and the wrong counsel can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars. While working with an experienced defense attorney with expertise in the areas of personal injury can help you get the right compensation for the pain, trauma, and loss you have suffered. Whether you are looking for a legal team to represent your personal injury court for yourself or a loved one, you should always look for the best legal teams near you. Check their reputation, work history and level of expertise before you judge them by the retainer or fee.

About the Author

Mandy Bular

Member since: 30th January 2018

Mandy Bular is a freelance content writer. She has written many good and informative articles on different categories such as technology, health, fashion, education, career, travel etc. She is a featured...

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