No one wants to have to file a personal injury case. By definition, it means you have suffered some harm. But if the harm you have suffered is someone else’s fault or happened due to their negligence, it’s important to know what types of injuries qualify for a personal injury case.
What is Considered a Personal Injury Case?
A personal injury case is a lawsuit to recover damages from the party responsible for those injuries. In these cases, the injured party seeks to prove that their injuries were the fault of the person they are suing, whether through negligence or intent to harm. But what constitutes personal injury? The type of harm covered by personal injury law includes not only physical injuries but also emotional and psychological harm.
Most states have some type of statute of limitations on personal injury cases. In other words, you must file a lawsuit within a certain period from when the injury occurred. In most states, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases ranges between one to six years; in Colorado, you generally must file a claim within two years of your injury.
Common Types of Injuries in Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury claims are relatively common in the United States; the Department of Justice reports that more than 400,000 personal injury cases are filed annually. That means more than 1,000 cases are filed every day! Here are a few of the most common types of personal injury cases.
1. Car accident injuries
If you experience injuries due to a car accident, you may be eligible to seek damages from the person responsible. Depending on the situation, you might also be eligible to seek damages from the employer of the person at fault for a crash. For example, if someone is driving as part of their work duties and they cause an accident that leaves them with injuries, they could file for compensation from their employer.
2. Slip and fall injuries
Slipping and falling can be an embarrassing way to sustain an injury. But, depending on where and why your slip and fall occurred, you may be able to collect damages. Property owners are generally responsible for avoiding putting others at risk for injury. If you fell because of dangerous conditions a property owner (or maintenance company) failed to rectify, you might have a case to be compensated for your injuries.
3. Medical malpractice injuries
Medical malpractice can occur when a healthcare provider’s negligence results in injuries or damage to a patient. Those injuries could result from a healthcare procedure gone wrong, a misdiagnosis of a medical condition, or an incorrect dosage provided by a pharmacy, among other things. Patients are entitled to seek compensation for losses and damages caused by a healthcare provider’s violation of their duty of care.
4. Workplace injuries
The workers’ compensation process generally covers injuries in the workplace. In Colorado, employees injured at work must file a written workers’ compensation claim with the State. Qualified damages, including the costs of medical care and lost wages, will be covered by workers’ compensation insurance. In most cases, if your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, you will not be eligible to file for damages on top of what you receive from your workers’ compensation claim (although there are some narrow exceptions).
5. Dog bite injuries
According to the CDC, more than 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the United States. And if you suffer injuries from a dog bite, you may be entitled to compensation from the dog’s owner. In Colorado, dog owners have a responsibility to prevent their dogs from injuring others. They can be held financially responsible for injuries and damages caused by a dog bite or attack.
6. Product liability injuries
Every day, people are injured by poorly designed or manufactured consumer products. For example, a defectively manufactured bicycle or a children’s toy that endangers its users. Product manufacturers are legally responsible for the safety of their products. If a product injures you due to faulty design, manufacturing defects, or failure to provide adequate user instructions, you might be eligible for compensation.
Requirements for a Personal Injury Case
Personal injury cases have three primary components. The injured party needs to be able to prove liability for the injury, establish the extent of the damages, and pursue the appropriate avenue of recovery.
Liability simply means demonstrating that another party is responsible for your injuries. The specifics of proving liability will vary depending on the type of injury. But in all cases, you must be able to show that the other person caused your injuries, whether through negligence or intent to harm.
Damages can consist of medical expenses incurred due to your injury. However, damages can be much greater than that as well. Perhaps you had to take time off work to recover from your injuries – you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages. In some personal injury cases, you may also be able to recover damages for emotional distress. While this can be harder to prove, emotional damage is no less real than physical damage.
Finally, to file a personal injury case, you must also determine the avenue of recovery for the damages you were seeking. In other words – who can you collect damages from? In some cases, you might be going after the personal assets of the person who caused your injury. In others, you may be seeking compensation from an insurance policy, whether that be a driver’s auto insurance, a doctor’s medical malpractice insurance, or a company’s product liability insurance.
Tips for Choosing the Right Personal Injury Attorney
Personal injury cases require careful attention and a vast knowledge of local, state, and federal laws related to the type of case. For this reason, you don’t just want any attorney representing you — you want someone with the knowledge and experience necessary to help you win your case. More importantly, you want a legal team that treats you with the kindness and respect you deserve.
If you’re looking for real lawyers representing real people, look no further than Legal Help in Colorado. Our team of legal professionals promises to always provide kindness, honesty, patience, thoughtfulness, and respect. We will tirelessly fight for your rights, and our team will do everything in their power to ensure you get the most money possible in your personal injury case.
Whether you were injured in an auto collision, a workplace accident, or while walking down the street, we are here to help. Contact us today for a free case consultation and begin your journey to justice.