You may have been hurt in an accident, or you might be the victim of medical malpractice. You may not know what you can do to make things right. If this sounds like your situation, then it’s time to talk with a personal injury lawyer about filing a lawsuit for damages.
A personal injury is an injury that happens to a person. There are approximately 300,000 to 500,000 personal injury cases each year in America.
- 52 percent result from car accidents
- 15 percent result from medical malpractices
- 5 percent result from product liability issues, and
- 28 percent result from other causes
Road accidents also form a significant percentage of personal injury cases in the United States. As per a recent report, the number of US traffic deaths in 2022 has been the highest in 20 years, with more than 9,500 people killed in road accidents in the first three months of the year.
If you’ve suffered one of these types of injuries and have ongoing medical bills because of it, you may be able to file a claim against the person or business that caused your injuries.
The law defines personal injury as anything that causes injury to your body, mind, or emotions. For example, if you slip and fall at the grocery store due to a wet floor and sustain an injury, this would be considered a personal injury.
There are limits on what constitutes a personal injury case. For your claim to be valid under U.S. law, it must be physical. You cannot recover monetary damages for emotional distress unless it was caused by physical injuries such as bruises or fractures (or other types of more serious injuries).
However, some states, like Missouri, let a victim file a personal injury compensation for emotional distress alone. It is best to consult a local lawyer for your injury case. So, if you are in St. Louis, Missouri, take the advice of a St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney for your case.
To build a personal injury case, you need the following:
- You must prove the defendant’s negligence. This means that they failed to act as a reasonable person would have under similar circumstances.
- You need to show that you were injured and the extent of your injuries. For example, if you suffered a broken arm in an accident, you would need medical records showing that this is true. If you were robbed at gunpoint on your way home from work, video footage of the incident would help your case immensely.
- If there’s been an injury or loss of property involved (your wallet was stolen), there should be documentation in writing stating what happened and when it happened (such as police reports), as well as photographs or other types of evidence showing the damage done by another party (such as photos).
- It’s important to have proof of how much money it will cost for medical treatment related to these injuries. For example, records from doctors detailing each visit with costs associated with them could help establish what amounts are owed.
The statute of limitations is the time limit you have to file a lawsuit, and it varies by state. Statutes of limitations are designed to prevent people from filing lawsuits years after an accident occurred.
They give defendants enough time to prepare for trial and also ensure that plaintiffs don’t use the threat of litigation as a way to get out of paying their medical bills.
In most states, personal injury cases have a two-year statute of limitations (with some exceptions). If you want to file a personal injury lawsuit in your state, make sure you know how long you have before your claim expires.
There are a few different types of damages that you may be able to recover in a personal injury case. The most common include:
- Medical Bills – If you had to pay for medical bills due to your injuries, you would be able to get compensation for them.
- Lost wages – If your injuries caused you to miss work, then this is another type of damage that can be recovered by filing a lawsuit.
- Pain and Suffering – It’s natural for any person who has suffered an injury to experience some level of pain, both physical and emotional. If your injuries were serious enough that they led to severe pain and suffering, you could receive compensation for these issues as part of your settlement or judgment.
- Property Damage – Finally, if someone damages something on your property (such as their vehicle), they must pay restitution for the damage they caused so that things can be returned into good condition as quickly as possible.
As per the Bureau of Justice Statistics, a staggering number of personal injury claims are filed each year. But only about 3 to 4 percent of them go on trial. Most of these cases are settled outside of court, but only after a lawsuit is filed.
If you’ve been injured because of someone else’s negligence, it may seem like a good idea to sue them. But before you do, there are some things that you need to consider.
First of all, make sure that your injuries are serious enough for a personal injury lawsuit and that they happened in the right place at the right time. Second, find out if there’s any evidence against your defendant. For example, were they driving while drunk or texting while driving when they hit you?
Thirdly (and most importantly), find an attorney who has experience with representing clients in cases like yours so they can help advise you on what steps to take next.