What Is a Personal Injury Claim?
A personal injury claim is for when you are physically, emotionally, or socially injured. You can recover damages if someone injures you by hitting you, inflicting you with great emotional distress, or even making false statements insulting you. This may include medical bills, therapy bills, or other expenses.
Types of personal injury claims include:
Personal injury claims usually seek to ensure that the injured party is fully compensated for any damage the injured party may have suffered. The aim is to make the injured party whole again.
What Kind of Injury Does a Personal Injury Claim Involve?
Injuries affect a plaintiff’s emotional health, physical health, or both. An accident can cause emotional pain and anguish.
Organs, limbs, and other body parts can be physically injured. The injury of a personal injury plaintiff need not manifest itself immediately but may develop over time.
Personal injury claims can be based on several types of events or accidents, including the following:
- Accidents and injuries
- Construction accidents;
- Dog bites and animal attacks;
- Defective products (class action);
- Elder abuse;
- Nursing home abuse;
- Premises liability;
- Product liability injury;
- Toxic exposure (class action);
- Unsafe drugs (class action); and
- Wrongful death;
Accidents can occur in a variety of ways. An individual may find it useful to examine accident statistics to be better prepared and prevent accidents before they occur.
What Is an Intentional Injury Claim?
An intentional injury occurs when a defendant intentionally injures a plaintiff. When a defendant commits battery, assault, or false imprisonment, they have intentionally caused harm. An unpermitted battery is a harmful or offensive contact with another.
Assaults can be classified into two types. The first is an incomplete battery. A battery can be incomplete if (among other reasons) someone intervened and stopped it.
In another form of assault, a defendant places a plaintiff in an immediate state of fear of harmful or offensive contact, such as by threatening to harm that person immediately. False imprisonment is the forcible restraint of a person without their consent.
What Is a Personal Injury Claim Based on Negligence?
A negligence claim asserts that the defendant injured the plaintiff by breaching a duty of care owed to the plaintiff by the defendant. The plaintiff has made a negligence claim by demonstrating that this breach caused the injury.
A plaintiff is owed a duty of care depending on the circumstances. Under a particular set of facts, a defendant must use that degree of care that an ordinary person would use.
If a defendant is driving their vehicle on a highway in non-inclement weather, they must follow the motor vehicle laws.
When this type of situation arises, the defendant has a greater duty. This means exercising the degree of care that is appropriate for inclement weather. Drive at a reduced speed, use windshield wipers, and use your headlights and taillights.
As to whether a plaintiff has a duty of care, it is determined by the foreseeability of harm that may result if the duty is not exercised. To determine if a plaintiff is owed a duty of care, the following question can be asked: Would a person in the defendant’s position have anticipated that the plaintiff would suffer such an injury?
The defendant owes the plaintiff a duty of care if the answer is “yes.” The defendant has caused the plaintiff injury and damages by breaching that duty.
If the answer is “no,” then no duty is owed, and the defendant cannot have been negligent.
What Types of Damages Can a Judge Award an Injured Plaintiff?
The injured plaintiff who proves that a defendant is liable (proving the defendant committed an intentional or negligent act) is entitled to compensation. There are two types of damages that a plaintiff can recover under the law: damages for the injury itself and damages for the consequences of the injury.
This distinction is recognized by law. General and specific damages are two types of compensatory damages under the law.
General damages are the damages awarded for the injury itself. This includes pain and suffering, mental anguish, and trauma.
It is difficult to assign a monetary value to general damages. An expert, such as a physician or psychiatrist, must testify to assign a monetary value to such damages.
Special damages are damages that compensate someone for a specific consequence of an injury. Specific consequences include medical expenses and loss of wages.
A specific monetary value can be assigned to these items. If a doctor’s bill lists payment due, a pay stub, or a record of a plaintiff’s earnings can determine the amount lost due to an injury.
Special damages will be awarded to compensate the plaintiff for those costs which their insurance or medicare and medicaid did not cover.
What Is a Work Injury Claim?
A work injury claim is similar to a personal injury claim, except for when you are injured on the job. Usually, the injury is related to the job in some way, such as because of a job-related task you were required to do or because the accident happened during work hours on company property. Most work injury claims are covered by worker’s compensation.
However, remember that no workers’ compensation covers workplace injuries. There are some instances where an injury is not covered, especially if the worker was engaging in illegal activity at the time of the injury.
What Are Some Examples of Work Injuries?
Some employers compensate for injuries not directly associated with the job description, but most claims concern injuries that are directly related to the job description. These include:
In some instances, worker’s compensation may also cover off-side injuries sustained outside the workplace (for instance, injuries resulting from a car accident during a work day). This will depend on the nature of the employment contract between the employee and employer and state laws. It may be possible to hold an employer liable if the injury occurs while the worker is on the clock or under the direction of their employer.
What Is a Criminal Injury Claim?
When you are injured in the course of committing a crime, you can file a criminal injury claim. Usually these claims are civil cases filed against someone who has committed an assault or battery against you. Usually, the person who attacked you is also charged with criminal charges. A criminal case will result in the attacker being imprisoned, but a civil case can help you recover the damages you suffered due to the attack, such as medical fees.
Do I Need an Attorney?
You may be able to recover your losses by filing a lawsuit if you have been injured by someone or something. Injury lawsuits are often time-sensitive, so it’s best to consult with a personal injury lawyer about your options.
An experienced attorney will be able to help you decide which type of claim you should file and will fight to ensure that you are fully compensated for any injuries you may have suffered.