Identifying Personal Injury

A simple definition for personal injury is a civil wrong that has caused harm to someone because of another person’s negligence. Common types of personal injury litigation occur from automobile accidents, dog bites, and slip and fall accidents.

Proven Negligence
To win the litigation, plaintiffs (victims) have to prove negligence was a factor in the incidence. Furthermore, they may also have to prove they in no way contributed to their injuries. For example, if a driver runs through a red light resulting in a crash, the plaintiff may have to verify he or she was not texting, talking on a cell phone, or have been otherwise distracted. If, for any reason, proof is verified the plaintiff contributed to the injury, complete liability may not fall on the defendant. For example, dogs and other animals must be on a leash or otherwise restrained; however, if a plaintiff stuck a hand through a fence, and then was bitten, it may be shown the plaintiff contributed to the injury. Plaintiffs can seek compensatory damages in personal injury cases.

Compensatory Damages

There are two types of compensatory damages that may be awarded in civil litigation.
•Monetary Compensation- reimbursement for lost wages, cost of medical expenses, and payment for destroyed property are some of the common costs sought in personal injury cases. Other consequences of the defendant’s negligence could end up with the plaintiff suffering a disability. If this is the case, compensatory damages may be awarded for having to live with a disability. If negligence resulted in death, survivors may seek funeral costs.
•Non-Monetary Compensation- not all injuries are visible, which may lead to plaintiffs being awarded damages for pain and suffering. Emotional anguish in addition to actual pain are included in this category.

The federal government doesn’t recognize uniform personal injury laws encompassing all states. Each state passes its own personal injury laws, but a basic rule of thumb is that any action or lack of action resulting in harm to another person could be considered cause for personal injury. Therefore, consulting with an attorney in your state If, for instance, you live in New York, consulting with a New York personal injury attorney is the best way to determine if you have a case.

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