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What Constitutes a Personal Injury?

Personal injury claim form

Looking for a defense attorney in Lynnwood? Do you need someone to explain how a personal injury case was filed against you after you posted something about someone over social media? Well, that is something to talk about.

Personal injury law or "tort" law allows for compensation to a person who was harmed due to wrongful conduct by another. There are many instances that can be considered as worthy of a claim, but not all injuries can have legal liability.

In case a claim is made and is successful, money damages are paid to the injured by the one who caused the injury. The value of the damage is determined through a settlement or through an order by a judge or jury after trial.

What is a Personal Injury Case?

According to the American Bar Association, every personal injury claim has two fundamental issues — liability and damages. Is the defendant liable for the damages done to you? If yes, you have to identify the nature and extent of the damage. If you can prove both, you will be awarded compensation. There are three bases for liability: negligence, strict liability, and intentional wrong.

Let us take, for instance, the issue of a car accident. If you were involved in an accident caused by someone who did not exercise reasonable care (of which is expected from drivers), you can make a negligence claim. Assuming the injury occurred in a state that does not have no-fault laws passed, the driver must pay for the compensation.

Strict liability is another basis for liability which covers injuries sustained from the provision of a service or the use of a product. Defective product cases are the most common cases. In strict liability, there is no need to prove that the company acted negligently. You only need to prove that the product caused the damage.

Now, if someone punches you, it is considered an intentional wrong. This can be considered as battery. If the manager of a convenience store locked you up because they thought you stole something, you can make a claim for false imprisonment. Some defendants of intentional torts can also be held criminally liable, but a personal injury case is a separate proceeding from a criminal proceeding.

What are the Most Common Personal Injury Cases?

Personal injury claim form

There are many types of personal injury cases. As varied as they are, many will fall cleanly to a type of a negligent act, strict liability, or an intentional wrong. The most common, however, are car accidents, slip and falls, and defamation cases.

  1. Car Accident – In the US, most personal injury cases arise from car accidents. Car accident cases usually involve a careless driver being found liable for the injuries they caused. However, "no-fault" states allow insurers to pay for the damages.
  2. Slip and Fall – A property owner must ensure that his property is safe. If someone fell from a badly joint railing, a claim can be sought. Those who are renting property also have the legal duty to make their premises hazard-free.
  3. Defamation – Either through libel or slander, defamation is an injury to someone's reputation due to a false statement. The defendant only needs to prove that a negative statement was made and that it caused harm. The negative statement must also be proven as "untrue."

Personal injury cases are truly common. Nevertheless, they can be complex due to circumstances that are unique to the parties' experiences. The disregard of one's legal duty is tantamount to a successful exercise to prove negligence, intentional wrong, and strict liability.


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