6 Things Victims Should Keep in Mind Before Filing a Personal Injury Case

by Staff

An accident causes a range of injuries. From physical conditions to emotional disturbances and property damage, the consequences of an accident have the ability to topple the victim’s life.

 

Under personal injury law, you are entitled to compensation for the damages you have suffered. Hiring a lawyer will give you clarity on the types of damages in personal injury law and ensure your rights are protected.

 

6 things to keep in mind before filing a personal injury case

Before you file a personal injury case, there are several things to keep in mind.

1. Legal counsel

It would help if you also considered hiring a lawyer to help you file your claim. There are many exceptions and fine details that can trip you up if you’re not well-versed in the law. Having a lawyer assist you will ensure that you file the necessary documents in the correct format.

Personal injury lawyers also have extensive experience with such cases and can give you valuable counsel on how to proceed with your case.

2. Statute of limitations

In general, there is a 2-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims. If your claim is not filed within that time, your case will not be valid. The duration varies from state to state.

There are some exceptions to the statute of limitations:

  • Some injuries are not discovered when the accident happens, but only after a while. In such cases, the deadline is reset, starting when the injury was discovered.
  • Suppose the victim is undergoing treatment due to the accident, such as multiple surgeries, and needs time to recover. In that case, the statute of limitations is paused until the treatment for the injury related to the accident is completed.
  • If the defendant intentionally concealed information that the victim was unable to discover until later, the statute of limitations may be extended to account for fraudulent concealment of evidence.

3. The extent of your injuries

The severity of the injuries sustained can significantly impact how the case is judged and how much compensation you receive.

Some injuries may cause long-term problems, and you have a right to compensation for such injuries. Make sure a medical professional assesses your injuries and provides detailed statements.

You should consult experts, like medical professionals, to consider the economic costs you may face due to your injuries. For example, a fracture may cause a permanent limp that may prevent you from continuing your current job.

You can include wages lost and the cost of securing new employment in your compensation claim as well.

4. Burden of proof

It is up to the victim to provide the necessary evidence to support their claim. Without adequate evidence, your case will be dismissed.

In order to prove your injuries, medical prescriptions, bills, or a record of treatment undergone to cure your injuries will be required. In some cases, testimonies from your doctor may also be used to validate your claim.

Photographs or videos of the incident or your injuries will add value to your case.

You can also provide evidence for emotional distress that was caused due to the accident, like journal entries or a therapist’s notes.

Eyewitness testimony will help strengthen your point of view even further. For example, if you sustained injuries in a car accident, having a bystander vouch for your version of the incident helps substantiate your claim.

5. Defendant’s financial status

Before you file a personal injury claim, you should consider the state of the defendant’s finances. If they have filed for bankruptcy or are in a state of financial insolvency, they may not be able to pay you any compensation.

You should consider if it’s worth pursuing a claim against the defendant, as you will have additional costs to file the claim on top of the expenses for the accident.

6. Emotional toll

Legal proceedings can be very draining. Some personal injury claims can take a while to reach a conclusion. It could take even longer to receive compensation. You have to consider if you have the financial and emotional ability to pursue a personal injury case.

Conclusion

To sum up, victims should keep several things in mind before filing a personal injury claim, as they can get pretty complicated. Being aware of the specifics of your case gives you the power to choose the best course of action.

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