If you’ve recently been injured under circumstances that either weren’t your fault or were only partially your fault, you may be understandably concerned about your legal options. After all, you may have had to take time off of work to heal and your medical bills may be mounting. Seeking compensation can help to ensure that your family’s finances don’t bear the weight of your circumstances that should rest on another’s shoulders.
It isn’t always clear whether an injury victim has a civil case to make and that’s okay. You don’t need to be a legal expert to explore your options. In fact, that’s why lawyers practice – to assist those who may need legal guidance whenever such assistance may be warranted. There is nothing that says that you have to be 100 percent certain that your case is viable before you speak with a lawyer.
As a result, it’s important that you explore your legal options promptly, thoroughly, with seriousness of purpose, and with the professional support you’ll need to make informed decisions. A failure to accurately answer the question “Do I have a case?” may mean that you and your family will miss out on compensation that would otherwise be rightfully yours.
Personal Injury Legal Standards
As an experienced personal injury lawyer – including those who practice at Davis, Johnson & Kallal – can explain in greater detail, the legal standard that you’ll be required to meet in civil court will depend upon the type of case you’re filing. “Wait a minute,” you may be saying. “I’m filing an injury case. What’s the standard for that?”
Personal injury law is not a single body of cases, laws, and regulations. Each state has specific legal language on its books that dictates how personal injury cases are managed in that jurisdiction. Additionally, subsections of personal injury law feature different generalized standards that plaintiffs need to meet if they hope to be awarded compensation.
For example, most motor vehicle accident injury victims must prove the following three elements:
- A defendant owed them a legal duty of care
- That defendant failed to honor that duty when they engaged in reckless, negligent, or intentionally dangerous conduct
- The victim’s injuries resulted directly from the defendant’s actions or inactions.
By contrast, a slip and fall accident victim must generally prove that the owner of the property upon which the accident took place either knew or should have known about a hazardous condition on their property and they failed to take steps to mitigate the risk of harm caused by that condition.
The question of whether you have a strong case to make given your unique circumstances and the law that will apply in your case is best posed to a local lawyer. That way, you can receive personalized professional guidance that doesn’t assume that your case is like anyone else’s. If you suspect that you are entitled to compensation, there is absolutely no harm – and potentially a lot of good to be had – in seeking legal feedback.