The Right Way Of Handling Lawsuits
Almost 15 million civil cases are filed in the US every year. Personal injury cases are amongst the most demanding cases as they are often exhausting, costly, and time-consuming. While the sheer vastness of the legal world may leave a lot of us confused by the technical wording, loopholes, and legal jargon, the most important aspect of handling any lawsuit is to remain adamant about receiving justice if you’ve been wronged by an individual, a business, or even a government institution. In personal injury cases, sometimes the trauma and pain caused by an accident can be the main driving force behind suing the negligent party for the damages they have caused. This effect can even be amplified when you’re facing negligent organizations that have very slight regard to your well being.
The following is an overview of the best way to prepare for and handle lawsuits.
Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer
After you’ve begun the medical treatment of any sustained injuries, you should meet with a professional personal injury lawyer. Fortunately, injury lawyers aren’t in the habit of charging for their consultations, so you’ll get to know if your claim holds water in the eyes of the law for free. Insurance companies try to keep you from getting the compensation you deserve by overwhelming you with the legal channels to make it too costly to pursue the case, which is why these experts only charge a fee after they’ve fully handled the case and secured a win. Your attorney will check the official documents along with any evidence you’ve brought and will tell you if you’re missing anything else during the consultation visit.
Your attorney will start a full-on investigation to gather all the necessary information about the case concerning the type and extent of the injury, potential disabilities, medical expenses, and other valuable details. The attorney will try to reach a reasonable outcome by negotiating with the insurance company and the other party’s attorney. You can rest assured that the attorney you choose to help you will be able to handle the whole process and come to a satisfying outcome. At this point, all you have to do is focus on getting better and wait for further developments from your attorney.
Your attorney will send a demand letter that will ask for the rightful settlement for the damages caused, injuries sustained, medical expenses, loss of potential wage, physical and emotional traumas, and any required health care for the injury. Your attorney will pack their strongest punch in the demand letter to show the insurance company or other party that you mean business. The clearer the evidence and documents collected regarding the incident are, the stronger the letter the demand letter will be. The response of the insurance company to the demand letter can be a counteroffer, rejection, or acceptance. If the insurance company refuses to pay, or stuck in a low compensation package, you’ll want to inform your attorney that you’re ready to take this to court.
What to Expect?
You should be comfortable with the fact that you may wait for months or even years to finally get the justice you deserve. Small cases usually don’t take that long to be resolved, but the bigger the scale of the case, the more time it will take to be resolved. The litigation process can be very confusing to take all at once with all the different procedures involved like motions, pleadings, hearings, cross-examination, document requests, adjournments, and many more. This is why it’s very important to prepare yourself for the long game and find a lawyer that you can fully trust for the whole duration of the case.
Filing a Lawsuit
The statute of limitations is a major factor that can be a deal breaker in many cases. While a few types of lawsuits have no statute of limitations, the majority of lawsuits have one. Since each state is different, you’ll want to check the statute of limitations of your state for personal injuries; it can range from 1 year to 6 years. The plaintiff in the lawsuit will be you, the one damaged or injured from negligence while the other party will be the defendant.
The process of discovery commences in the early days of the lawsuit where both lawyers will begin exchanging the related available documents to the case like medical bills, witness statements, police reports, and others. Depositions are done next where questions will be asked to the plaintiff and other witnesses under the oath. A lot of personal injury trials never go past the discovery phase as a settlement is reached quickly after this full-on display of information.
Grounds for Suing
While most personal injury cases often have the negligence of an individual or business-related medical malpractice and work injury as the ground for suing, there are other bases for personal injury lawsuits. An intentional tort is the purposeful injury of one individual to another. The line may sometimes blur between criminal and personal injury cases, making it both a tort and a criminal case. Strict liability doesn’t need proof of intention or negligence from the victim; it implies the responsibility of the defendant due to their direct involvement in the injury, for example, defective products.
Compensation and Punishment
The plaintiff is awarded financial restitution by the judge or the jury if they win the case. That amount of money is set based on the damages incurred from medical bills, lost wages (both present and future), physical pain, emotional trauma, and any disability resulting from the accident. As long as this is a personal injury and not a criminal one, the defendant will only be paying what the court tells them to pay to the plaintiff in addition to some fines, depending on the judge and state.
Personal injury attorneys are used to handling cases that are settled before going to trial, but you’ll want to have someone who is ready to go all the way to get you the justice you deserve in case you had to go to court. Even though it can be hard, you should always remain patient during the course of a lawsuit, even if it takes a while.