Being injured is always hard. You have to make adjustments to your life in ways that you may have never thought you would. For example, you may be out of work because your injury prevents you from driving to work or doing the physical labor necessary to perform the duties you had at your old job. You may also have to get help from someone else with daily tasks that you once considered easy such as shopping, cleaning, cooking, and taking care of your children.
Being injured in an accident that was not your fault is even harder. You likely have feelings of frustration and anger and you may frequently wonder, “why did this happen to me.” If this sounds like you, you may be thinking about whether you should file a personal injury lawsuit to attempt to get compensation for the time and money you have spent recovering from your injury, as well as for the physical pain you have experienced. Before you do, consider the following facts about personal injury law:
- To win a personal injury lawsuit, you must have evidence to prove your case in court. Very broadly, to win a personal injury lawsuit you must offer evidence in court to prove that (a) you were injured, (b) that your injury was caused by someone else, and (c) that the person who caused your injury acted in an unsafe manner to cause your injury. Evidence to support these elements of your claim can come from many sources such as your own testimony, the testimony of witnesses, video footage of the accident, any police report that may have been filed, medical records, and testimony from people who know about how the accident has affected your life such as your doctors, therapists, family members, or employers.
- It may take time for you to get the compensation that you deserve. Although potentially hard to hear, it is important to realize that civil litigation takes time to pursue and resolve. Often, the most efficient way to get fair compensation for your claim is to consider an early settlement with the defendant or the defendant’s insurance company in your case. This approach will save you time, attorneys fees, and court costs. Sometimes, however, it may be necessary to go to trial to present your case to a judge and jury in order to get a fair result. The civil trial process can be lengthy, sometimes lasting months or even years. Whether it is worth the time and expense for you to go to trial depends on the facts of your case and your personal wishes.
Perhaps the most important first step you can take when considering filing a personal injury lawsuit is to contact an injury lawyer who can discuss your case. Your personal injury attorney will be able to apply the law in your state to give you practical advice about your claim and help file a lawsuit on your behalf.