When a person is hurt in an accident that was not their own fault, they may end up making a personal injury claim for their damages and losses against a defendant or even their own insurance carrier if a defendant is uninsured. An injury claim is separate from a claim for damages done to personal property, such as vehicles, houses, and any of their contents. Continue reading to learn the fundamentals of personal injury claims to help you get a better understanding of your legal options for recompense, and the best place to get started on your claim.
Types of Accident Claims
Accident claims include incidents such as a wrongful death of a family member or spouse, as well as, physical and psychological injuries like orthopedic, workplace, muscle, brain and spinal cord, burns, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and more. Common accident claims include car collisions, pedestrian accidents, workplace accidents, slip and falls, medical malpractice, and defective products. Additional types of claims have involved swimming pools, nursing home neglect, sexual harassment, children’s injuries, dog bites, boat accidents, and more.
Victims who win their personal injury claims may be awarded compensation for the losses and damages they incurred as a result of the accident. The most common types of damages and losses compensated for in a personal injury case include:
-Pain and Suffering
-Loss of Ability to Work
-Pain Medication Dependencies
-Loss of Love or Companionship
-Diminished Quality of Life
-Long-Term Medical Care
-Loss of Benefits from Loved One’s Death (i.e. medical insurance, veterans benefits, etc.)
Claimants vs. Tortfeasor
The claimant in a personal injury case is the person who is making a claim against a defendant and if settlement of judgment is obtained, the claim is paid under an insurance policy that the defendant has which covers such claims for the negligence of the defendant. This is usually the actual victim of the accident. The “tortfeasor” is the person or entity responsible for causing injuries to a claimant, also known as the “at-fault party” or “defendant.”
If the case goes to trial, there are two chief parties: the “plaintiff” and the “defendant.” The plaintiff is the person who filed the suit; this can be the actual victim of the accident, or an immediate family member, spouse, or legal guardian. The person or party being sued is referred to as the defendant.
The additional persons that are often involved in a personal injury case include the attorneys, insurance adjusters, first party insurance (claimant’s insurance), third party insurance (the other person’s insurance), juries, and judges.
Contact a Licensed Attorney
These terms are important for you to know in order to better understand your claim. It is strongly encouraged to consult a licensed and experienced personal injury law firm to discuss the best options for recompense following your recent accident.