What is a personal injury as described in a personal injury claim?
A personal injury is a physical or mental injury or medical condition that was a result of another party or parties’ negligent or reckless actions or behavior. In some cases, a personal injury is referred to as a bodily injury.
What are the types of accidents that a victim can pursue a personal injury claim for?
The most common type of incident is a vehicle accident, however, there are multiple types of accidents that qualify for personal injury damages. These include defective products, medical malpractice, premises liability, slip and fall accidents, dog bites, boating accidents, sexual assault, and more.
What steps should a victim take after they have been injured?
The first thing a victim should do is seek out medical attention, even if they do not think they have any injuries. Injury symptoms often take a day or two, sometimes longer, before they appear and that delay in treatment could cause issues later on in the personal injury claim or lawsuit.
If the accident involves insurance companies, such as a vehicle accident, the victim should not speak with the other driver’s insurance company until they speak to their own personal injury attorney. The goal of the insurance company is to try to minimize – if not reject completely – any damages they have to pay out and will do everything they can to get the victim to say things that could be used against them.
The victim should instead retain the services of a skilled personal injury lawyer New York, NY residents trust about what their legal options are and what damages they may be entitled to.
What are some of the types of damages that a victim can be financially compensated for?
There are two types of damages a victim can receive – economic and non-economic. Economic damages are those that can be financially quantified. For example, medical bills have an actual dollar amount and is therefore an economic damage. A non-economic damage is one that does not have a dollar amount and needs to be calculated a different way. Pain and suffering is one example of a non-economic damage.
- Medical expenses, such as doctor visits, hospital stays, surgeries, diagnostic testing, physical therapy, mental health therapy, occupational therapy, prescription and over-the-counter medication, medical equipment, and more
- Lost wages, including employee benefits and overtime
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
- Emotional trauma
- Physical disability
- Mental disability
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Expenses the victim has incurred because the injury prevents them from doing them. This can include transportation costs, childcare costs, housecleaning service costs, landscaping costs, snow removal costs, and more
In some cases, a victim may also be awarded punitive damages, which serve as a way to punish the at-fault party and send a message to society that the actions of the at-fault party that caused the injury to occur will not be tolerated. For example, if a victim was injured in a drunk driving accident, they could receive punitive damages in addition to the economic and non-economic damages.
Thank you to our contributors at Okun, Oddo, and Babat, P.C. for the above information.