Personal injury cases are often not as easy as they look on the surface. Sometimes the injured party may be ruled to have caused the accident, shifting the blame on them and robbing them of part or all of their expected compensation. The Lansing personal injury attorney note that knowing the at-fault party is the first step toward determining eligibility for an injury claim.
The attorneys have further explained the important factors and elements that prove and support a valid personal injury claim. These elements include;
The Defendant Has a Duty of Care
One of the fundamental elements of a personal injury case is the duty of care. The duty of care establishes that the other party is expected to have acted reasonably or in a certain manner to have ensured their safety and the safety of others.
For example, an average driver on the road is expected to have taken driving classes, know how to drive, service their vehicle to ensure compliance with the road traffic laws, drive sober and with full concentration on the road, and obey traffic laws. Doing all of these can help the driver remain safe on the road.
However, if such a driver fails to maintain their car, or lacks adequate driving knowledge, or worse still, drives while drunk, they risk compromising their duty of care towards other road users, thus increasing the risks of accidents, injuries, and death.
The Duty of Care Was Breached
Having established what a duty of care is, it is important to note that breaching the duty of care puts both the defendant and others at risk.
As in the similar example above, the distracted or drunk driver has clearly breached their duty of care by not doing their part in ensuring everyone’s safety on the road. This means that the victim may be able to claim damages for the drunk or distracted driver’s negligence which has caused them injuries and cost them financial and mental distress.
Establishing that the other party, or defendant, has breached their duty of care is an important part of a personal injury case. Insurance companies or the court may be unable to address your case without solid evidence to prove that the defendant was indeed in breach of their duty of care.
The Duty of Care Breach Caused You Damages
Another element in a personal injury case is the element of losses and direct impact.
It must be established that the at-fault person or defendant’s negligence and breach of duty of care has caused you injuries or damages directly.
For example, an employer who has failed to repair a leak in the office space can be held liable for a slip and fall accident caused by wet floors resulting from the leak. However, such an employer may not be held liable for a heart attack suffered by an employee at work because the unrepaired water leak has no direct contribution to the health issue suffered.
It is important to note that personal injury claims are aimed solely at compensating a victim for the direct pain and suffering they experienced due to another person’s actions.
The Incident Occurred Within the Set Statute of Limitations
Statute of Limitations is a legal word that describes a case’s “expiry date.” The statute of limitations was introduced to keep evidence fresh and traceable while protecting the court’s time and resources.
Different personal injury cases have different statutes of limitations across different states. It is important for accident and personal injury victims to research case-specific statute of limitations in their state and how it affects them.
Alternatively, injury victims should seek immediate legal help when they can to better understand their case as well as their chances of recovering damages.
There Are No Mistakes or Errors That Could Harm The Claim
The last and most important element in a personal injury case is the victim’s actions or errors. Injury victims are required to protect their cases by avoiding common errors like falsification of evidence, lying, exaggerating facts, and others.
Many accident victims with genuine cases have lost out on a chance to recover damages due to common errors they’ve made. It is important to speak to a personal injury lawyer as quickly as possible to understand common errors to avoid and how to protect your injury claim.
Wondering about the common errors that could hurt your chances of recovering damages? They include;
- Lying or exaggerating the facts of the case
- Taking the first compensation offer by insurance companies
- Volunteering too much information to insurance adjusters
- Not hiring an experienced and competent injury lawyer
- Not seeking medical attention immediately after your accident
- Not following treatment instructions during the recovery phase
- Failing to take action early after you’ve suffered a personal injury, and more.