Personal Injury FAQ
Know Your Rights
When you are injured by the negligence of another, you have the right to pursue legal actions that can hold responsible parties liable for compensating you for the damages you suffered. Whether the injury is the result of an accident or an unsafe consumer product, you should have a solid understanding of your right to fair compensation and a firm grasp of the legal procedures you have available.
Having worked with more than 30,000 clients throughout the years, our firm's McAllen personal injury lawyers realize that many injured victims simply do not know where to begin. As a result, many victims and their families go unfairly compensated and are left to deal with physical, financial and emotional repercussions with limited means. In order to prevent this from happening in our community, the legal team from Stern Law Group has compiled a few essential questions and answers that can help you get started with your claim.
What should I do after I've been injured in an accident?
First and most importantly, you should seek immediate medical attention. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your accident or injury, it is always wise to collect the evidence, information and documentation that can be used to support any legal actions you take in the future. While these things may be difficult to remember in the heat of the moment, you can always revisit the experience by writing down exactly what happened, finding witnesses and collecting other necessary information. If you decide to take legal recourse and file a personal injury claim, it is recommended that you seek legal representation as soon as possible.
What is personal injury claim?
A personal injury claim is a legal action brought against the party responsible for causing your injury. Similar to an insurance claim for property damage, personal injury claims are typically filed against a responsible party's insurance provider, or if responsible party is a large business or corporation, against the company itself. Personal injury claims require you to establish fault on behalf of the responsible party, which will make them liable for compensating you for the damages you incurred.
What is liability?
Liability is the legal term used to describe the legal obligation of the person or company responsible for causing your injury. This obligation will typically entail their responsibility to financially compensate you for the damages you suffered. When it can be proven that a person or company is at fault for causing your injury, they will be liable for compensating you.
How does compensation work?
Once liability has been established, a court will award monetary compensation to a victim that will be paid by the at fault party. Compensation is typically awarded for economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages. Economic damages are the financial repercussions suffered by an injured victim, including their medical bills and lost wages resulting from their inability to work. Non-economic damages are any emotional damages suffered by a victim and their family, such as their pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of quality or enjoyment of life. Punitive damages are awarded in certain cases when the at-fault party has committed an act of extreme negligence or an illegal crime. For example, drunk driving cases regularly award punitive damages.
Do I need an attorney for my claim?
While you are not legally obligated to have legal representation in order to file your claim, there are numerous benefits to having an attorney on your side, as well as numerous disadvantages to filing a claim alone. Simply put, claims involve a great deal of dense legal work, obscure terminology and frustrating legal procedures. They can also be contested by defendants, which means that large insurance companies and other corporations will use their seemingly endless resources and legal teams to pay you as little as possible. Some cases, especially those involving product liability claims, make legal representation almost a necessity.
More questions? Contact us today!
We have provided these answers to frequently asked questions as a starting point for you to understand your rights and the legal procedures you can take to protect them. As a victim, you should be aware that claims will always vary on a case by case basis, as the unique and personal circumstances involved will always dictate the trajectory of your claim, legal strategy and how you can be compensated. If you have any more questions about the personal injury claim process, or if you would like to discuss the particularities of your case with one of our McAllen injury attorneys, contact Stern Law Group today.