In a personal injury case, payment of personal injury claims is awarded to an injured person by the person or company which is found legally at-fault and responsible for the accident. Compensation to the injured person by the at-fault party is commonly made through various types of insurance coverage by insurance companies. On very rare occasions an individual or at-fault party may be liable to pay compensation. In the overwhelming majority of cases, however, the negligent person or at-fault party’s insurance company will pay the plaintiff’s damages.
What is a Personal Injury?
A personal injury is an injury that occurs to one person as a direct result of the negligence or wrongful act of another person. The injury can be to the mind, body, or emotion. Personal injury is a civil lawsuit and does not include damages done to personal property. The most common type of personal injury is related to types of accidents, such as automobiles or pedestrian. Injuries may also result from defective products, slip and fall accidents, or medical malpractice. Whenever the injury is caused by the negligence of another person or party there lays a potential for a personal injury claim to recover financial compensation for any losses resulting from the injury.
What type of compensation may be awarded depends on the jurisdiction. However, the law, generally considered, awards compensation to a plaintiff, i.e., the injured party, for his or her medical bills, any pain and suffering they have endured, and resulting diminished quality of life. Typically, the burden of proof in civil lawsuits is directed to the party that caused the victim’s injuries, i.e., the defendant. Every case is unique and any compensation awarded will be related to the circumstances involved. At-fault is determined by the party more likely than not that caused personal injury to the victim. That party will be held responsible for paying damages through their coverage by their insurance company.
The Person Responsible Pays for Personal Injury Claims
Because every case is unique, awarding payment in a personal injury lawsuit will depend on the accident. The most common types of insurance that pay out to a victim in a successful personal injury claim include auto insurance, medical malpractice insurance, homeowners insurance, retail business insurance, medical office insurance, workers’ compensation insurance or general liability insurance.
All of that considered, for most, the number one consideration in a personal injury case is, “What is my case really worth?” That answer is relative to the case itself. Damages can be related to costs incurred by the plaintiff be it monetarily, physically, and-or mentally. In some cases, the size of the award may also be related to whether the conduct of the defendant is punishable.
When considering a dollar figure it’s easy to quantify missed time at work or tallying up the number of medical bills. It’s harder to place a monetary value on physical limitations, pain and suffering, and other lingering injuries from the accident. Therefore, the amount of compensatory damages awarded to the injured plaintiff, in addition to lost wages and medical bills, is that amount which would make the victim’s life as “normal” or “whole” as possible once again.
In some cases, awarding damages can be agreed upon through a negotiated settlement. This can be done in advance to avoid a lengthy or costly trial or may be ordered by the judge or jury after a court trial. A negotiated settlement entails all parties involved in the case—the plaintiff, the defendant, their attorneys, the insurance company or companies.
Choosing a Lawyer with Knowledge and Experience
Whatever your injury, it’s important to seek legal assistance from attorneys who specialize in personal injury law. In any instance in which you are injured, visiting a personal injury attorney is in your best interests and the best way to ensure you receive just compensation for yourself and your family.