Were you recently injured in some type of accident? Was a negligent party responsible for causing the accident? While you are sure to have a lot on your mind, such as treating your injuries, it is important to learn more about your legal rights. The steps that you take today will determine if you are able to receive compensation for your injuries in the future.
What is a Personal Injury Case?
A personal injury case comes about when one person suffers injury in an accident, and somebody else may be responsible for causing the harm. In some cases, a personal injury case is formalized in the court system. However, it is much more common for these disputes to be settled out of court before a lawsuit is filed. Either way, if you have been injured in an accident, it’s important to understand that you have options.
Types of Accidents
There are many types of accidents that can lead to a personal injury claim. The most common involve some type of motor vehicle. This can include but is not limited to cars, trucks, motorcycles, and buses. Another type of accident that often leads to a personal injury claim is a slip and fall. This can happen in many places, such as a grocery store or parking lot. As the name suggests, this is when a person slips, falls, and is injured as a result.
Note: medical malpractice and animal attack injuries also fit into this category.
A motor vehicle accident is the most common reason for filing a personal injury claim. Every year, thousands of people are injured and killed in such accidents, with these occurring from one side of the country to the next.
If you want to learn more about motor vehicle accidents, including important data and statistics, visit the following websites:
- Association for Safe International Road Travel
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
- Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
Just because you are injured in some type of accident does not necessarily mean you are in position to file a personal injury lawsuit. In order to do so, you must be able to prove the following four elements:
- Duty: the defendant had a legal duty to the plaintiff.
- Breach: he defendant breached said duty.
- Causation: the actions of the defendant caused injury to the plaintiff.
- Damages: the plaintiff was injured or harmed in some way due to the actions of the defendant.
As you can see, there is more to proving negligence than assuming that somebody was responsible for harming you.
Where to Turn for Information
If you want to learn more about personal injury law, there are several places you can turn. In addition to contacting an experienced attorney, you can review the following online resources:
- State Bar of Wisconsin
- Wisconsin State Law Library
- American Bar Association
- State of Wisconsin Department of Transportation
All of these resources will help you better understand some aspect of personal injury law.
Personal Injury Timeline
Although no two personal injury lawsuits are the same, there is a basic timeline that each case follows. Here are the steps that you should expect to face:
- Receive medical treatment for your injuries.
- Learn more about who caused the accident.
- Contact a personal injury attorney.
- Your attorney will review your case, including your medical records and details of the accident.
- Your attorney may attempt to settle with the other party out of court.
- If a settlement is not reached, your legal team will file a formal lawsuit.
- If a settlement is not reached after the discovery process, the case will go to trial.
These steps are among the most common, but you should expect other details to come up along the way.
Your Health and Moving Forward
No matter what type of accident you were involved in, nothing is more important than your health. Make sure you receive immediate medical attention, and that you have a medical team on your side that can provide you with the follow up treatment you need. Once you feel good about your health, you can then begin to learn more about your legal rights. It is then that you will realize if you are in position to make a claim.
If you have questions about your situation, if you need any sort of guidance during this difficult time, you can contact our law firm online or via phone at 800-431-9776. From there, we’ll take the time to review your case, answer your questions, and help you decide what to do next.