If you have recently been injured due to circumstances that were either not your fault or weren’t only partially your fault, you may be in a strong position to file a personal injury lawsuit. Personal injury lawsuits are filed for all kinds of reasons. Common personal injury lawsuit subjects include car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, medical malpractice, slip and fall accidents, defective products, and dog bites. What each of these scenarios has in common is that the injuries caused by these situations involved the negligence, recklessness, or intentionally harmful conduct of at least one party.
Personal Injury Lawsuit Basics
As an experienced San Francisco, CA personal injury lawyer – including those who practice at The Morales Law Firm – can confirm, not every accident or otherwise injurious scenario is legally actionable. For someone to file a potentially successful personal injury lawsuit, four primary legal elements must be proven. First, it must be demonstrated that the defendant named in the lawsuit owed the injury victim who filed the lawsuit, also known as the plaintiff, a duty of care under the law. This simply means that the law recognizes that the defendant had some obligation to minimize the risk of harm inherent in their relationship with the plaintiff. For example, when any motorist gets behind the wheel of a car, they are obligated to minimize the risk that they will harm others as a result of unsafe operation of their vehicle.
Second, it must be proven that the defendant breached their duty of care to the plaintiff by behaving in a way that the law considers to be negligent, reckless, or intentionally harmful. For example, when a motorist chooses to drive drunk, they breach their duty of care to other travelers because they are not taking reasonable and proper steps to minimize the risk that they will cause others harm while operating their vehicle.
Third, it must be proven that the defendant’s unacceptable approach directly caused the plaintiff’s injuries. It is usually possible to hold a defendant accountable for contributing to the causes of a victim’s injuries even if that victim also was partially to blame for their circumstances.
Finally, it must be demonstrated that the plaintiff’s injuries resulted in some sort of tangible loss, like the cost of medical bills or lost income as a result of time taken away from work so that they could recover.
Contact a Skilled California Personal Injury Lawyer to Learn More
If you have not yet scheduled a consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney, you should do so now. Many injury victims don’t speak with a lawyer after they have been hurt in a car wreck because they either believe that they don’t have grounds upon which to file legal action or that pursuing legal action wouldn’t be worth their time and effort. In truth, you may be entitled to far more compensation than you might think. Clarifying your rights and options with a skilled lawyer will help you to make informed decisions that may result and a significant compensation award.