Personal injury lawsuits allow injured people to recover their losses resulting from other parties’ negligence. Each state upholds unique laws pertaining to personal injury lawsuits, and most aim to limit the number of frivolous lawsuits eating up court system time and resources while at the same time ensuring parties with legitimate claims have open avenues to recovery. Some personal injury claims in California may only take a few phone calls and a few days to resolve while others may drag on for months or even years in intense litigation.
If you or a loved one recently suffered an injury due to another party’s negligence, you may have grounds to file a lawsuit with a personal injury lawyer. However, there are several key questions to ask before committing to legal representation; hiring a lawyer can be expensive. Most will either charge their time by the hour or offer a contingency fee agreement and take a portion of a client’s final recovery instead. In either case, it is crucial to know when you need a personal injury attorney.
Assess Your Damages
Several hundred dollars in damages will not be of much concern to some people and devastating to others. A personal injury may only result in minimal losses and such cases are rarely worth pursuing; the parties involved may come to a mutual understanding, resort to insurance coverage, or settle the matter some other way without requiring legal action. Other personal injuries involve far more substantial damages. In any case, the potential plaintiff should gauge the potential value of the case award or settlement and weigh it against the possible cost to see the case through to a verdict or settlement.
Any plaintiff who sustained severe injuries or developed a permanent disability should contact a personal injury lawyer. These cases may involve substantial damages, and an experienced attorney can help ensure a plaintiff receives a fair settlement or case award for immediate and future damages.
Consider Insurance as a Solution
Insurance comes into play in countless personal injury cases. For example, if a negligent driver causes a car accident while lane splitting in a fault state, the at-fault driver is liable for the other driver’s damages. If the at-fault driver has enough auto insurance coverage to fully cover the cost of the victim’s damages, the issue essentially ends once the injured driver receives a claim payout. Homeowners insurance may provide protection for a property owner who negligently allows a lawful visitor to the property to suffer a serious injury.
Whenever insurance comes into play in a personal injury situation, the insurance carrier will want to investigate the claim and ensure its legitimacy. If an insurance carrier unreasonably delays a claim, denies a claim without justification, or interferes with a legitimate claim in any way, an attorney can help hold the insurance carrier accountable for bad faith. If you plan to use insurance for any types of significant claim, an attorney can help with drafting a demand letter and negotiating with claims adjusters on your behalf.
Was Another Party Negligent?
The root of any personal injury claim is the concept of negligence. If another party caused your damages due to inattention, carelessness, or intentionally dangerous behavior, you likely have grounds for a personal injury claim. Any potential personal injury claimant should understand the potential costs of litigating a personal injury claim and clarify all financial obligations before agreeing to legal representation. A personal injury claim offers a fantastic method for recovering from the results of another party’s negligence, but it may not be the best solution for every legal issue. Consider taking advantage of a free consultation offer from a local personal injury attorney to see if your situation merits a lawsuit.