How to File a Personal Injury Claim
The physical, emotional, and financial pressures that accompany a serious accident can feel insurmountable. Medical costs, lost wages, emotional stress. And for those who don’t understand the personal injury process, even the thought of seeking compensation may only add to the burden.
At Wagner Reese, our attorneys are passionate about seeking justice on behalf of the injured and the wronged. We know that the time after an accident may seem confusing and overwhelming, but we are here to help you understand what to expect from the legal process.
If you have suffered injury because of someone else’s actions, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. If it is found that the at-fault party did cause your injuries, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other expenses associated with the incident.
There are a variety of situations that may result in a personal injury claim, including the following:
We typically see a majority of personal injury claims come from cases where someone acted in a negligent or reckless manner that resulted in harm to another person. Common examples of these include slip and fall incidents, traffic incidents, and fire-related accidents.
Sexual assaults are part of the criminal justice system, not the civil justice system. As such, you must work with an experienced personal injury attorney to bring forward a civil claim in order to recover compensation after such an act.
When a product did not perform within the manufacturer’s original intent and injured a consumer, it falls under product liability.
While no two personal injury cases are the same, there are typical steps that most cases share.
If you are injured in an accident, you should see a doctor, even if you believe your injuries are not serious. Failing to seek medical treatment may be used as evidence against you to diminish your injuries, which can reduce the amount of compensation you receive.
To begin the personal injury lawsuit process, you will need to file a complaint. A complaint is a formal legal document that identifies the factual and legal basis for a lawsuit.
Once the Complaint has been filed, the parties will engage in “discovery.” This process allows both sides to ask for evidence and witness information.
Most Courts require the parties to attend mediation. Mediation is a process by which the parties attempt to settle a claim with the assistance of an impartial third person, the mediator. The mediator, an attorney trained in alternative dispute resolution, typically points out the strengths and weaknesses of both sides’ respective cases and tries to get the parties to reach an acceptable compromise.
If the parties cannot resolve the case at mediation, the case will be scheduled for trial.
Given the legal complexities behind personal injury cases, coupled with the stress of an accident, it’s best to hire a lawyer to help you navigate through this process. At Wagner Reese, we are happy to provide free case evaluations to discuss the merits of your case and go over your legal options.
Recovering Compensation Through a Personal Injury Claim
There are different kinds of damages that you may be entitled to compensation for in a personal injury case.
- Past and Future Medical Treatment
- Past and Future Lost Wages
- Past and Future Pain and Suffering
- Property loss
In some extreme cases, where a defendant’s actions were particularly egregious, the plaintiff may be also awarded punitive damages to punish the defendant.
Should I Go to Trial?
A majority of personal injury cases are settled prior to trial. This is because there are certain disadvantages to going to trial, including the following:
- Pursuing a lawsuit can be a lengthy process. This can be difficult for plaintiffs who are already experiencing hardships with their accident, both financially and emotionally.
- Trials are risky. Although you may be able to receive more than what the defendant offered during settlement negotiations, jurors may reward you less than you deserve or nothing at all.
This is why it is vital to work with a personal injury attorneys who are seasoned in the courtroom. At Wagner Reese, our attorneys are unafraid to protect your rights in trial, and we have the experience and resources needed to do so.
If you were injured in an accident, we understand that you have many questions and concerns, from medical expenses to the recovery process. Most people have never had to navigate the legal system before and are unsure of what to expect from a personal injury claim. Our attorneys are here to be with you every step of the way to make the process proceed as smoothly as possible.
Contact Wagner Reese at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free case consultation today.