What Are the Chances of Winning a Personal Injury Lawsuit?Personal Injuries
What are the chances of winning a personal injury lawsuit? There is no way to predict if a personal injury lawsuit will work out in your favor. However, there are actions that you can take to put yourself in the best possible position to get the maximum recovery available.
First, you should always have a Charleston personal injury lawyer evaluate your situation. A lawyer can advise whether you have a good chance of winning a claim or not. Because injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, they usually reject cases they think have a slim chance of winning.
What Does It Take to Win a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Every personal injury case is a negligence claim. To prove negligence, you must show that the defendant had a duty to act reasonably, that they failed to fulfill the duty, that their breach caused the plaintiff’s injuries, and that the plaintiff suffered damages. A personal injury case will fail if each of these elements is not proven.
Everyone has a duty to act reasonably in all situations. If someone owes another person a duty, they must fulfill it or risk a lawsuit. Duties exist to ensure that everyone has protection from unreasonable and avoidable harm. Examples of duties include the duty to operate a vehicle safely, the duty to place safe products onto the marketplace, and the duty to keep property safe from unreasonable dangers while visitors are on a property owner’s land or in their business or home.
If a defendant fails to fulfill their duty to a plaintiff, they have breached it. An example of a breach of duty is when a driver gets behind the wheel of a car while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It is also a breach of duty for a driver to operate their vehicle at a speed higher than the posted speed limit. Every personal injury plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached a duty owed to them.
The defendant must be the cause of your injuries. Even if you can prove duty and breach, if there is no causal connection between your injuries and the defendant’s actions, there will be no financial recovery for your injury. You may need eyewitness testimony and other evidence to prove a causal connection between the accident and your harm. Your personal injury attorney has experience helping personal injury victims prove causation and get the compensation they deserve.
Even if the plaintiff proves the first three elements of a personal injury claim, the plaintiff will not recover compensation if they cannot prove damages. Damages can be varied and substantial. Most personal injury accident victims need an attorney to assist them in making a case for their injuries.
Types of damages include:
- Economic damages, including current and future medical bills, current and future lost wages, loss of earning capacity, property damage, and other tangible damages specific to your case.
- Non-economic damages, including pain and suffering, mental and emotional trauma, and other intangible damages that occur as a result of a personal injury accident.
- Punitive damages that aim to deter wildly outrageous conduct from the defendant in the future.
Common Types of Personal Injury Cases
There are various types of accidental injuries that can lead to personal injury lawsuits. A personal injury is any harm to an individual’s mind or body. Common types of personal injury cases include:
A workplace injury is an injury that happens while a person is performing their job duties. Per the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a location qualifies as a workplace if it is the physical location of the company, another destination if your job requires travel, or any other place where company business takes place.
Types of workplace injuries can include:
- Exposure to toxic substances
- Traffic crashes involving company vehicles
- Falling debris
- Overuse, repetitive motion, and gradual injury
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Broken bones
- Contusions and bruises
- Hearing loss
If you suffered an injury on the job, you might be entitled to worker’s compensation. However, you might also have the right to file a personal injury against a third party who is not part of your employer.
Traffic accidents are common across the country. Traffic crashes can lead to serious injuries and even death. Deadly traffic crashes are on the rise across the United States, according to statistics reported by the National Safety Council (NSC). Over the past several years, the number of traffic accidents that ended in death increased by 16 percent. Many factors may cause a traffic accident, including speeding, impaired driving, recklessness, fatigued driving, etc.
Types of traffic accidents include:
Makers of products must place safe and working products onto the marketplace. Suppose a manufacturer fails to place safe products on store shelves. In that case, they may face liability for the harm caused by the defective product. If the plaintiff used the product as intended and suffered harm from it, they might be entitled to compensation.
A premises liability claim is a cause of action against a property owner. Every property owner must keep their land or business free from unreasonable danger. If a property owner fails to keep their land or business safe, the injured person may have the right to compensation.
Potential plaintiffs in premises liability cases include:
- Licensees: Licensees are people who have the property owner’s permission to be on the land. These people include friends, family, and other social guests. A property owner owes a licensee the duty to keep their property free from any dangerous conditions that may cause injury.
- Trespassers: A trespasser is a person that does not have the property owner’s permission to be on the land. A property owner does not have a duty to a trespasser. However, if there is a child trespasser on the property, the owner must take care to avoid artificial and foreseeable risks of harm that children may be susceptible to, like swimming pools.
- Invitees: Invitees are on the property owner’s land or inside their business for economic purposes. Invitees may be a customer in a store or a door-to-door salesperson.
Wrongful death is probably the most difficult and heartbreaking type of personal injury case. A wrongful death results from the negligence of another person or entity. The deceased’s family pursues wrongful death claims to recover for the loss of their loved one. Who can sue in a wrongful death case varies from state to state.
Possible wrongful death plaintiffs include:
- Parents of a child that died in utero
- The immediate family members of the deceased (typically spouses and children)
- Parents, siblings, or grandparents if there are no surviving children or surviving spouse
- Life partners, financial dependents, and putative spouses (in some states)
Medical malpractice claims arise from mistakes that medical professionals make while treating patients. Medical negligence can lead to new injuries, worsened injuries, and untimely death.
Common types of medical malpractice claims include:
- Errors while receiving anesthesia or other medications
- Failure to treat
- Failure to diagnosis
- Surgical mistakes
- Childbirth injuries
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me Win My Case?
One of your first steps after a personal injury case should be to hire a personal injury attorney. A personal injury lawyer’s job is to protect their client’s rights and ensure they get the best outcome available to fully recover from their injuries and recoup their damages. If you or a family member suffered an injury in a personal injury accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney in your area immediately after the accident. A personal injury lawyer can help you build your case in the following ways:
Negotiate With the Insurance Company
Most personal injury cases begin with negotiating with the responsible party’s insurance company. Unrepresented personal injury plaintiffs usually have difficulty getting the money they deserve after an accident. That is why it is vital to have an experienced advocate on your side when attempting to settle with the insurance company.
A personal injury lawyer will take care of all correspondence, phone calls, and any other contact with the insurance company so you can focus on healing from your injuries.
Investigate the Cause of the Accident
As your case continues, your personal injury lawyer and their team will work to investigate your claim thoroughly. Your lawyer may have the resources and professional connections you need to prove the facts of your case. For example, suppose you are in a car accident. In that case, your lawyer may work with an accident reconstructionist to learn more about what happened at the scene of the accident and prove who is responsible for the crash.
Identify All Potentially Responsible Parties
You must ensure that you name each potentially responsible party in a personal injury lawsuit. It is a common mistake of many personal injury victims to fail to name everyone or each business that may be liable for their damages. Suppose you do not name every possible defendant. In that case, you may be leaving money on the table you are entitled to after suffering from injuries in a personal injury accident. Your personal injury lawyer can help you find each responsible party.
Speak to Insurance Companies and Defense Attorneys
When you are dealing with an injury, you should not have to handle communications with insurance representatives or lawyers. In fact, doing so can jeopardize your entire case. You can leave all of these communications to your injury attorney.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
If you or a loved one suffered an injury in a personal injury accident, contact an experienced attorney in your area. It is important to have legal representation. Having a good legal team working on your behalf can mean the difference between winning and losing your case.
A personal injury lawyer can help you get your life back on track after suffering harm from an accident that was not your fault. Do not hesitate to contact a Charleston personal injury lawyer if you have injuries from an accident.