According to the Department of Justice, there are over 400,000 personal injury claims filed each year. Of these, most are settled out of court. Only around four percent of all cases go to court.
Not all these claims are paid out fairly, however. It’s always recommended to work with a lawyer who knows the intricacies of personal injury laws.
Whether you plan on hiring an attorney or going it your own, there are some things you need to know. Continue reading to learn five important things about personal injury laws you need to know.
1. There Are Time Limits
Statutes of limitations govern personal injury lawsuits. These laws mandate how long you have to sue someone after your accident occurs.
Depending on the type of personal injury, you usually have two to three years. This can vary slightly from one location to the next. It’s essential to know the clock starts ticking from the date of your injury, even if you didn’t report it right away.
2. Personal Injury Covers More Than Just Car Accidents
While car accidents are the most common personal injury cases, they aren’t the only ones. A personal injury case deals with any injury or damage caused by the carelessness or negligence of another person or company.
Personal injury cases include a broad scope of lawsuits beyond car accidents. They can consist of defective consumer products or improper installation of electric devices. Personal injury cases would also include slip and falls due to obvious hazards or dog bites.
3. You Can Be Compensated for Future Damages
When determining a proper settlement amount, future damages can also be considered. If you can’t work for long periods due to an injury received by the person you’re suing, this can be factored into the settlement. You can also factor in ongoing medical expenses, including physical and emotional therapy.
4. You Don’t Have to Accept the First Settlement Offer
This is especially important if the other party is an insurance company. Insurance companies know most people want to be done with the financial recovery process as quickly as possible. They’ll use this to their advantage by creating a lowball offer in the hopes it’s accepted.
You don’t have to accept any offer that doesn’t cover your needs after an accident or injury. You’ll have to provide proof of why the original settlement isn’t enough. This is why it’s essential to learn more about personal injury laws and work with a lawyer who can help you navigate the process.
5. Your Medical History and Personal Life Aren’t off Limits
During a personal injury case, be prepared for the opposing party to take a deep dive into your personal life if they’ve hired an attorney to help them. Not only can they go through your medical and employment records, but also any public records and your social media profiles. If there’s anything they can find to make you look bad, they will.
Do You Have More Questions About Personal Injury Laws?
Personal injury laws cover more than just car accidents. Navigating these laws to receive a settlement can be complicated because of the regulations governing personal injury.
Do you have more questions about personal injury laws?
Feel free to peruse our other blog posts. You’ll find a wealth of information on related topics that can help you better understand the subject.