Dealing with an injury is stressful enough; there are the medical bills, missing work (loss of wages), potential physical therapy, handling damage to any property, adjusting to a new routine, etc. You may be wondering whether or not you should contact a personal injury attorney.
While there is no substitute for specific advice about your situation from a qualified attorney, it may be helpful to gain a better understanding of what makes a good personal injury case. Here are nine signs you have a personal injury case worth pursuing:
1. You have medical records proving your injury.
You need to be able to prove the extent of your injury. The best way to do that is with documented medical records. This is one reason why it’s often suggested that you seek medical care in a timely fashion (go to the hospital, a chiropractor, or a primary care provider) to be treated following a car accident. Following such an accident, it often takes a while to feel the full extent of your injuries. A qualified medical professional will be able to assess your situation, provide valuable documentation, and implement a proper treatment plan.
2. A personal injury offense occurred.
A personal injury offense can occur in many situations, and an accident can take many forms. For example, you may have experienced a:
- Car accident
- Bike accident
- Motorcycle accident
- Trucking accident
- Boating accident
- Slip and fall
- Dog bite
- Amusement park ride accident
- Airplane injury
These are just some examples of an accident you may have been involved in.
3. You were injured due to someone else’s negligence.
Your injury was caused by someone not doing what they were supposed to do. For example:
- Another driver didn’t follow traffic laws.
- A business owner did not ensure their property was safe.
- A doctor made a mistake that cost you considerably.
4. You cannot return to work; your injury has altered your life and daily routine.
It can be a real issue if your injury makes it impossible for you to get back to your regular life: working, going about your daily routine, and enjoying time with friends and family. Not being able to make money due to an injury caused by someone else’s negligence may entitle you to monetary compensation.
5. You’ve had expensive medical bills.
According to recent research, over 137 million Americans currently have issues with medical debt. There’s no doubt that medical bills can get expensive. If you can prove that it was someone else’s fault that you were injured, you may be entitled to compensation to take care of any related medical bills.
6. There is photographic or video evidence of the event in question.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and it’s hard to argue with a photograph or video that clearly shows someone else’s negligence. Many people install dashboard cameras in their cars so that, in the event of an accident, they will have video footage of everything that went on. If you have slipped and fallen in a store, photographs of the hazard that caused your fall and injury are important pieces of evidence. Documenting the accident scene is key.
7. You can otherwise prove the other party was at fault.
Maybe you don’t have any photographs or videos, but perhaps you have a dozen credible witnesses that can testify to seeing someone else’s negligence caused your injury. Many things can prove fault in a personal injury case such as police reports, testimonies from experts, eye witness accounts (whenever there are witnesses at the scene, be sure to get their contact information), and evidence of damaged property.
8. The defendant owes you and breached their duty of care.
When someone gets behind the wheel of a car, they have a duty to be the most responsible driver that they can be: not distracted on their cell phone, not leaving the bar intoxicated, not running on a night of zero sleep. Grocery store employees have a responsibility to mop up spills, for example. Doctors and nurses have an obligation to do everything in their capabilities to help their patients.
In all of these situations, an injury can be caused by another person breaching their duty of care. A breach of a duty of care may also just mean the failure to exercise care and caution expected of someone behind the wheel, store employees tasked with keeping the shopping environment safe and clean, or a physician.
9. You haven’t made any mistakes regarding the incident.
Some mistakes can be a significant detriment to a personal injury case. You need to be aware of these mistakes so that you can avoid them, or you can speak to an attorney about the mistakes you have made. Some common mistakes that victims experiencing personal injuries make include:
- Not being treated by a medical professional immediately following the incident in question.
- Posting about the accident, the injuries, or any other pertinent information relevant to the case on social media.
- Giving an insurance adjuster an official statement of what occurred without the advice of an attorney.
- Ignoring advice provided by a healthcare professional.
These are just nine signs that you may have a good personal injury case. However, if you are unsure, the best thing to do is to contact an attorney. If you believe someone else’s negligence has led to your injury and that you may be entitled to compensation, please give us a call today for a free consultation.