Being injured in an accident is a scary thing--and, for many people, trying to determine their legal rights can be scarier still. This needn't be the case, however. If you have been injured in an accident and are considering pursing a personal injury case, read on. This article will provide answers to three commonly asked questions about personal injury law.
Do I have a legitimate personal injury case?
There are two basic criteria for building a successful personal injury case: fault, and extent of injury. First, there must be fault involved. For instance, say you were rear ended while waiting at a red light. In this case, there can be no question that the other driver was at fault. Of course, establishing legal fault isn't usually such a cut and dry procedure. Rather, fault is often established through proof of negligence. To prove negligence, there are four legal elements that must be involved:
Yet even if negligence can be established, in order for a case to be worth pursuing, the second criteria--the extent of the injury--must also be considered. This requires consultation with a doctor, who will make a reasonable assessment of your injuries, while taking any pre-existing conditions into consideration as well. Whether or not you have a strong case has just as much to do with the doctor's medical evidence as with the presence of fault.
What role will I play in the case?
It is important to realize that you will play a large role in the case. This doesn't mean that you need to start learning the ins and outs of the law--that's what your lawyer is for, after all. But it takes more than accident and medical records to build a compelling case. Just as important is your ability to convey the impact of the injury on a personal level.
Many personal injury cases end up being resolved out of court. Yet it is still important to think in terms of how a jury would respond to your case. Remember that a case is not just facts--it is also the story that gets told about those facts. The sincerity with which you present yourself will go far in determining how a jury responds to your case.
What should I bring with me to the first consultation?
When meeting with a personal injury attorney for the first time, be sure to bring anything at all that you think may be relevant to the accident. If you are calling a lawyer soon after your injury, you may not have a copy of the accident report yet, but if you do, be sure to bring it. Likewise, if you have been involved in an automobile accident, bring a copy of the information you obtained from the other person. And if you have already been to see a doctor about your injury, bring any medical reports about your treatment--as well as your medical bills.
Finally, bring along a copy of your own insurance policies. Your attorney, like one from Lerner, Piermont & Riverol, P.A., will be able to read through these and help to explain what sort of protection they can afford you. For instance, many people involved in automobile accidents are surprised to learn that they can collect medical payments coverage from their own policy, in addition to what they receive from the other party's insurance policy.
After you are involved in a serious car accident, you might feel confused about what to do next. In order to feel like yourself again, you might be tempted to try to go about your daily activities, only to come across loads of challenges. In addition to focusing on your own recovery, you might also be left wondering what to do about medical bills, pushy insurance adjusters, and annoying family members. However, the right lawyer can help you to find your way. My name is Dan, and I know firsthand how difficult it can be to recover from a bad injury. Read my website to learn how proper legal representation can simplify your journey.