It happens very frequently that people get injured or die because of someone’s fault. It can be an accident, negligence on anyone’s part. Hence it is the responsibility of the concerned party to compensate for the loss that occurred. Every year 100s of cases are filed in America which involve personal injury or wrongful death claims.
To win a personal injury case, you must file a claim and prove the opposite party’s fault in court. Although you can file such claims on your own, approaching a personal injury law firm is the best way to proceed!
Experienced law firms such as Phoenix personal injury law firms can help you file and get a justified personal injury claim.
Here are certain things you should know while filing a personal injury case:
1) Time limit: The time limit varies from state to state. You should know about your state’s time limit; otherwise, it will affect the filing of your claim. Say in Alabama, the time limit is up to 2 years, but it is up to 3 years in Alaska. You can find the time limit of your state here.
2) The personal injury value: You need to know the worth of your case. It is very important because you will lose your case if you are not aware of its worth. Many factors are considered by the court while deciding on compensation, like the severity of injuries, economic loss, non-economic loss, etc.
3) Who to file the case: You need to know who you can file a personal injury case against. Some of those parties are as follows:
- a) A driver involved in an accident with you
- b) An owner if someone dies due to premises
- c) If it’s a public vehicle like a plane, train, and so on, then you can file the case against the government
- d) A company which is responsible for producing a defective product
4) Witnesses: This is very important. You need to gather as much evidence about injuries and losses you have faced due to other’s fault. Even if it’s a small injury, make sure you provide all the evidence. It is a good idea to have witnesses on your side if possible.
5) Who to hire for the case: Many lawyers want to work on a no-win, no-fee basis. But you should be careful while choosing them because if you lose at the end, then you have to pay the money from your pocket. Hence go through their reviews and choose one that is reputed and trustworthy.
6) What to provide: You need to be specific while providing the information regarding your case because vague claims will not prove beneficial for you. If possible, it is better to ask for a physical injury report from the doctor who has examined you.
You can also get the police case report. If you have lost something valuable like a car, pets, etc., then provide that information.
7) Medical bills: You need to provide medical bills for all the treatments you have undergone and any future treatment that is likely to happen.
8) The suffering part: This is very important because suffering cannot be measured. You need to provide proof of the loss and pain you have been through till now.
9) Claim forms: If required, claim the court provides forms, or sometimes, you can find them online at their official websites. It would help if you filled those correctly and with true information.
10) Claim reports: This again varies from state to state. Some states ask for claim reports, especially if the case has high value.
11) Settlements: If you are not satisfied with the settlement offered by the opposite party, it is better to consult a personal injury lawyer because they will guide you further and help you get what you deserve.
What steps do I need to follow after a personal injury?
(1) Report the incident immediately to the police. You must seek medical attention after an accident, but reporting it to law enforcement will help strengthen your case by documenting the circumstances of the accident and identifying witnesses for both parties even if you aren’t sure who was at fault for an accident, file a report because making your claim without reporting the accident will be difficult.
(2) Keep records. Have any medical expenses verified by writing down the doctor’s name, date of visit or procedure performed, and the amount charged for services or an estimate if you didn’t pay your medical bill right away. Also, keep copies of estimates for the damage to your property, if applicable, as well as the police report.
(3) Contact an attorney. Consider hiring a personal injury lawyer if you’re in a serious accident and your injuries prevent you from returning to work. Even if you don’t think your case is worth much or is sure to be disputed by the insurance company, it’s generally worth hiring an experienced attorney because they can help you get the most from your claim.
(4) Seek long-term medical treatment if necessary. If you need ongoing medical attention or physical therapy, make sure that it’s documented and factored into the value of your claim when negotiating a settlement with an insurance company.
Is it necessary to hire a personal injury lawyer?
Hiring a personal injury lawyer is not the only way to protect yourself after an accident. But if you are having difficulty finding insurance coverage or feel that your claim isn’t being handled properly, consider hiring an attorney to represent you.
The best time to hire a lawyer is during the early stages of your case, before filing paperwork with the court. Suppose you wait until you’re seriously injured or have suffered a great deal of property damage.
In that case, it may be harder to find an attorney because many won’t accept cases that are already in litigation. Don’t assume your case is too small for a lawyer; most will take on relatively low dollar value cases, especially if they believe the insurance company isn’t fair.
It is necessary because it is quite hard to determine the worth of your claim without any evidence. A personal injury lawyer will help you get more money by negotiating with the insurance company.
Even if you don’t have good legal representation, filing a claim on your own would be better than not filing at all. Thus, having a lawyer is a bonus.