You are legally entitled to compensation if you suffer a personal injury due to someone’s negligence. You can sue in court or try to negotiate for damages, and you will need a specialist lawyer’s help in making your case.
However, personal injury law has a lot of misinformation and myths surrounding it. To make a personal injury claim, you must know the truth from the myths. With so much online information, knowing what is true and what is just a myth could be challenging. Read on to discover some common myths regarding personal injury law.
What is Personal Injury Law?
Personal injury law is a legal field that addresses causes where individuals have suffered harm, injury, or losses due to the negligence or wrongful actions of others. Its primary goal is to provide a legal framework for individuals to seek compensation for the damages due to someone’s negligence.
Personal injury law covers several types of harm and is not limited to just physical injuries. You can also make a claim for emotional distress, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD arising from someone’s intentional wrongdoing, as well as for financial losses.
Myths About Personal Injury Law
There are several myths about personal injury law. Here are some common myths and the truth behind them:
Myth 1: Any Attorney Can Handle a Personal Injury Case
Personal injury cases often require legal support from experts. However, while people believe any attorney can handle a personal injury case, that is untrue. Personal injury law is a specialized field of law that requires significant expertise that a general attorney does not have. You will need someone specializing in it, like Jimmy Doan an injury lawyer in Houston.
Attorneys with expertise in personal injury law can better help your case because of their in-depth knowledge of the legal intricacies. They have the knowledge of relevant statutes, case law, and legal strategies for personal injury cases. They also understand and can rebuke insurance tactics, which is essential in personal injury cases as they often involve negotiating with the insurance companies.
Specialized personal injury lawyers also have connections with experts like medical professionals, accident reconstruction specialists, and others who can contribute valuable insights to strengthen a case.
Myth 2: You Can Only Sue for Serious Injuries
Another prevalent myth regarding personal injury law is that you need to have sustained a severe and life-threatening injury before you sue. However, personal injury law covers all damage caused by someone’s negligence, no matter how serious or trivial. Even minor sprains and soft-tissue injuries are bases for a personal injury claim.
The legal principle behind personal injury law is negligence: the failure to exercise reasonable care. Consequently, the nature and extent of harm are not legally critical when deciding guilt but the other party's negligence. Further, even minor injuries can cause unexpected medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, and you deserve to be compensated for those damages.
Myth 3: You Can Wait Indefinitely Before Filing a Claim
Many people believe you can file a personal injury case at any time, no matter when the injury occurs. However, you are limited by the statute of limitations – the legal timeframe for a person to bring a lawsuit. So, you can only bring forth a lawsuit within a specified time that varies from state to state and country to country.
The importance of the statute of limitations in personal injury cases is profound. Over time, evidence gets lost, memories fade, witnesses become more challenging to locate, and a claim made long after the incident cannot have enough evidence preserved. Setting a time limit also ensures that legal claims are brought forward promptly, promoting fairness for all parties involved and the efficient administration of justice.
Myth 4: All Personal Injury Cases Go to Court
A common misconception surrounding personal injury cases is the belief that every dispute must go through a courtroom trial. In reality, many cases are resolved through negotiations and settlements, sparing individuals involved in time, stress, and uncertainty associated with court proceedings.
Most personal injury cases are resolved through negotiations between the involved parties, and they come up with a reasonable settlement out-of-court. Attorneys from both sides engage in discussions to reach a fair settlement and avoid a court trial, which can be lengthy and expensive.
Apart from negotiations, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods like mediation and arbitration can also be used in personal injury cases. In mediation, a third party facilitates discussions between the parties to reach a voluntary agreement, while in arbitration, a third-party arbitrator acts as a private judge and decides the case.
Personal injury law is an essential legal vehicle that protects individuals from other people’s negligence. It covers all kinds of harm that one incurs due to someone’s negligence, including physical, psychological, and financial harm. Even minor damage can make you eligible for a personal injury claim.
If you sustain an injury due to someone’s negligence, you can try negotiations and ADR or file a personal injury claim in court. However, remember that you can only make your claim in a stated period according to the statute of limitations. An attorney specializing in personal injury law can make your case significantly strong.