The key issue involving any type of personal injury tort (e.g. medical malpractice cases) is that of responsibility, and this concept can be broadly applied to our interactions with anyone around us at any time. Living as a part of a society grants us a number of benefits that allow us to thrive as individuals in a manner greater than would be possible on our own, but in exchange for the advantages that living as a group provides, we must take steps to prevent unnecessary harm from coming to one another as a result of our actions. From a legal standpoint, this concept is called a ‘duty of care‘ and refers to the responsibility that each citizen has of not putting others with whom they interact at risk of undue injury. This broad statement encompasses the entire realm of personal injury law, from car wrecks to dog bites, and is the basis upon which claims of negligence are founded when attempting to establish liability for an injury.
When seeking legal action against a perceived liable party in a personal injury lawsuit, the duty is on the plaintiff to establish that the circumstances of the injury constituted a tort. Proving a tort occurred first requires establishing that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff, or that the defendant was reasonably responsible for the safety of the plaintiff in the event of the accident. If it can be shown that the defendant not only owed a duty of care to the victim, but that they breached this obligation and an injury was sustained as a direct result of this failure, a tort has been established and it is possible to recover damages from the defendant
Personal Injury Cases
Torts can occur in any number of circumstances; however, certain situations lend themselves more to accidents caused by negligence. The following are a few examples of common injury cases in which the injured party can sue for damages:
- Car accidents
- Defective or malfunctioning products
- Slip and falls
- Injuries on an unsafe property
- Medical malpractice
Costs of Personal Injury Cases
Any time an individual comes to harm due to the negligence of another party, they will unjustly take on significant costs associated with the medical expenses, property damage, loss of income, and various other expenses, depending on the circumstances of the accident. Each situation is different, which is why the types of damages which can be awarded vary on a case by case basis. The following are a few examples of the types of damages you may hope to recover in a personal injury lawsuit:
- Direct damages for medical costs and property damage
- Compensatory damages for less tangible assets, such as lost income, pain and suffering, and loss of companionship
- Punitive damages for criminal levels of negligence, awarded to the injured party as a means of punishment of the responsible party
Seeking any type of compensation will require the assistance of skilled legal representation, and it is important to seek out an attorney with the experience and resources necessary to address your unique situation with a degree of personal attention which can allow you to feel confident that your rights and interests are being protected.