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What exactly happens when you file a personal injury claim? What will you need to demonstrate in order to win, and how does the legal process unfold?
In personal injury cases, you will need to demonstrate that the other party is responsible for the hardship you’ve experienced. In the case of negligence, that means their inaction resulted in harm done to you. In the case of liability, it means you were harmed by actions they took. If you feel you can demonstrate either of these, you may decide to move forward with filing a claim.
When you file a personal injury lawsuit, you become the plaintiff and the other person becomes the defendant. Attorneys for both sides begin gathering information in the form of documents, written questions and depositions, which are questions asked to a party who answers under oath. This stage of the process is called discovery.
Most personal injuries are settled after the discovery stage, meaning the defendant agrees to pay money to the plaintiff in exchange for the case being dropped. Only a small percentage of cases proceed on to trial.
If a case does go on to trial and the plaintiff wins, they will be awarded damages, or compensation from the defendant. This can include, for example, the cost of medical expenses, lost wages, future wage loss, physical pain or harm, or emotional suffering. Because personal injury cases are not criminal cases, the defendant will not be “punished,” only ordered to pay damages.
If you’d like advice on filing a personal injury claim, contact us anytime at 877-526-3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to speak with you. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond right away.
Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law