You are eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit if you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence. Situations that can lead to these lawsuits include car accidents, medical malpractice, product liability, workplace-related injuries, and many more.
These lawsuits don’t need to be complicated. In fact, over 700,000 personal injury claims get filed every year in the United States. However, following the correct personal injury lawsuit process will improve your chances of success.
You should never be stuck footing the bill for expensive medical bills when someone else is at fault for the injury you’ve suffered.
Read on to learn about the steps you need to follow when filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Understanding the Personal Injury Lawsuit Process
Knowing what to do if you get injured and what to expect will make it easier for you to navigate this legal process.
When the Injury Occurs
It can be difficult to keep your wits about you when an injury occurs to yourself or your loved ones. But the steps that you take immediately following an injury will have a direct impact on the success of your lawsuit.
While the exact steps depend on the nature of the accident, the important thing is to take down as much information as possible. Take pictures and videos of the entire scene, ask witnesses for their contact information, and take notes of anything that seems relevant.
The more complete this information is, the stronger your personal injury claim will be.
Immediately Following the Injury
The injured person must seek medical treatment regardless of whether they think they’re injured or not. This is so a doctor can rule out any internal injuries, but it also serves as proof to an insurance company.
Speak to a Personal Injury Lawyer
Some people will wait until later in the process to consult an accident lawyer, but this is ill-advised. Before you start worrying about the cost of consulting with a lawyer, it’s important to understand that a lawyer will not take your case if it’s unnecessary.
There are many benefits to hiring a lawyer early in the process. Besides the severity of your injuries and the potential lost wages, lawyers have years of experience when it comes to dealing with insurance companies.
Your lawyer will investigate your claims by conducting a thorough interview including your past medical history. Finally, they will collect all the medical records relating to your current injury.
Your Lawyer Will File a Claim or Demand for a Settlement
Often when the at-fault party is a corporation, personal injury lawsuits will get settled without going to court.
In these cases, your lawyer will demand a certain settlement amount as compensation for your medical bills and lost wages.
Alternatively, the lawyer will file a lawsuit against the at-fault party with the court. Bear in mind that most states have a time limit for how long you can file a lawsuit.
After the lawsuit gets filed, both parties will begin the process of discovery. During this time, the lawyers will review the case including the claims being made and the available evidence.
Mediation or Arbitration Stage
After lawyers have completed the discovery process, they will meet again in an effort to reach a settlement. The goal of both lawyers is to agree on a settlement so as to avoid the lengthy court process. However, this is not always possible.
Attempting to reach a settlement through mediation or arbitration is required by some states.
You Case Will Go to Trial
When a settlement cannot be agreed upon during arbitration or mediation, your case will go to trial and a jury will hear it. This process can take anywhere from a day to several months
Don’t Delay If You’ve Been Injured
With your family’s financial future hanging in the balance, awaiting the outcome of the personal injury lawsuit process can be a frustrating situation.
If you or someone you know gets injured, contact us today to see if one of our personal injury lawyers can help you reach a settlement.