Something most people will experience at some point is an unexpected injury. Such an injury can leave you in a lot of pain and result in financial hardship. You may be left wondering who you can turn to for help after such an injury. One option is to start a personal injury lawsuit. However, while some cases make for good personal injury lawsuits, others do not. Below are five questions you should answer before filing a personal injury lawsuit.
How Extensive Are My Injuries?
While every injury may be painful, not every injury should result in a personal injury lawsuit. If your pain was temporary in nature and you only suffered light bruising that quickly healed, you should not be filing a lawsuit. Instead, the injuries you sustained should be more extensive. They should have resulted in medical care with medical bills you have records for. If your injuries resulted in long-term conditions that continued negatively impacting your life, your chances in a personal injury lawsuit certifiably go up. If you have become disabled because of your injury or now suffer from a chronic condition, you should investigate the possibility of launching a personal injury lawsuit.
Did Another Party Have a Duty to Prevent Your Injury?
To have a personal injury lawsuit, you need to have a defendant. The party you sue, in general, must have been one that had a duty of some kind to not create a situation that lead to your injury. If you were injured in your own backyard due to tripping over a rock you placed somewhere, there is no one responsible but yourself. However, if you trip and fall because a business owner didn’t salt the entrance to their store during the winter, you may have a case. In that example, the business owner did have a duty to prevent their customers from being injured on their own property. According to statistics, 21.3 percent of hospital visits are from slips and falls.
Do You Have the Right Lawyer?
Lawsuits are extremely hard to win in general. To succeed, you need to have the right mix of skills and knowledge regarding legal precedent and the peculiarities of the legal jurisdiction your lawsuit will be tried in. Representing yourself, of course, is completely out of the question. However, you shouldn’t choose just any lawyer for this job. The lawyer who did your divorce or wrote your living will is probably not the right choice. Instead, you need a specialist. Choose a lawyer with years of specializing squarely in personal injury law, and choose one with a long track record of delivering large judgments and settlements for their clients. Choose one in your area. If you live near Lakeland, Florida, for example, you need to find a personal injury lawyer in Lakeland FL.
What Are All My Possible Financial Losses From the Injury?
Another component that should be present in a successful personal injury lawsuit is financial losses. This can include things like medical bills and lost wages. It can also include potential future losses. If you can no longer perform your job at work, this could include the calculation of future lost wages over your lifetime. It can even include financial losses for things that may not be completely obvious or easy to calculate. For example, the quality of life you live certainly can have a financial dollar sign attached to it if you are able to calculate for that. If you can no longer do some of your favorite activities due to your injury, that can certainly be considered a substantial loss.
What Evidence Do I Have?
The ability to present evidence in court to back up your claims in a personal injury lawsuit is extremely important. You should start procuring and saving this evidence immediately after your accident. Taking photos and videos of your injuries and the scene is important. Obtaining the contact information of eyewitnesses is also very important. You also need to obtain medical records for any medical treatment you receive. Even keeping a journal of your struggles with your injuries is a good idea.
If you have suffered a personal injury, you may have a chance in court. However, you should consider certain factors as well including the extent of your injuries, the amount you have lost and will lose financially, whether or not another party had a duty to prevent your injury, the evidence you have collected, and the talent of your lawyer. Answering these questions can help determine the strength of your case.
Stephanie Caroline Snyder is a 27-year-old who graduated from The University of Florida in 2018. She majored in Communications with a minor in mass media. Currently, she is an Author and a Writer. She was born and raised in Panama City, Florida, where her family still lives.