A person who is injured due to the negligence of someone else shouldn’t have to worry about how they’re going to pay for the costs incurred from an injury they didn’t cause. But who should have to pay the medical bills, and if the injury causes them to miss work, how do they get their lost wages back?
That’s why personal injury attorneys like those at the Bulldog Lawyers work hard to make sure that you’re able to focus on your recovery while we focus on obtaining compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Does My Injury Constitute A Personal Injury Claim?
If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, chances are that you may be able to file a personal injury claim. But what is “negligence?” A person or a company is negligent when they do not act with the normal amount of care for the safety of others that is expected.
Here are some examples of negligence:
- A family visits a water park and the mother slips and falls on a wet pool-side surface. A theme park ride operator noticed the slippery conditions and notified the pool manager about the slippery conditions four hours before the mother slipped and fell, but no one came to clean up the area. The theme park may be considered the negligent party if there was not appropriate signage indicating that the pool-side surface was off-limits, or if they could have prevented the slippery conditions from causing an injury.
- A teenager is texting while driving and strikes a woman’s car who is stopped in front of the teen at a red light. The teenager may be considered the negligent party because he was not acting with a normal amount of care for the safety of others when he was texting and driving.
- A man lets his dog off the leash at a local leash-only park. The dog runs up to a child and bites the child, drawing blood. The man who owns the dog knows that the dog has bitten several people before. He could then be considered the negligent party for letting the dog off of the leash in a leash-only park with the prior knowledge that the dog has bitten people in the past.
Negligence is a difficult concept to understand, and every accident or injury is different, so it is wise to consult with a lawyer to discuss whether or not your case constitutes a personal injury case.
What If I Was Injured At Work?
If you were injured at work,it may be possible that a third party is responsible for the injuries that you sustained. While workers’ compensation law prohibits people from filing personal injury claims against their employers, third-party lawsuits can be filed against other negligent parties. It is possible to file both a workers’ compensation claim and a personal injury lawsuit at the same time.
For instance, if a nurse’s lower back is injured while he is lifting a patient from the bed to the restroom, he may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim, but cannot file a personal injury claim against the hospital at which he works. This is because while the injury occurred because he was doing something that was a part of his job, the injury did not result from a third party that was acting with negligence.
However, if a contractor hired to fix a ceiling beam in the hospital’s hallway fails to secure the beam, and leaves the hallway open to foot traffic knowing that the beam could fall, this contractor could be considered the negligent party and any employees who are injured by this falling ceiling beam may be able to file both a workers’ compensation claim and a personal injury claim.
Coverage: Personal Injury
Personal injury claims can help cover the costs of some lost wages and pain and suffering that workers’ compensation does not cover.
Coverage: Workman’s Comp
Workers’ compensation claims cover medical bills and partial coverage of lost wages.
Common Types Of Accidents
Now let’s take a look at some of the most common injuries that result in personal injury claims.
Slip And Fall
If a surface is slippery, insecure, or compromised in any way, slipping and falling is a possibility. Below are some common injuries that can result from slip and fall accidents.
- Head and Brain Injuries
- Neck Injuries
- Back Injuries
- Torn Ligaments
- Pulled and Strained Muscles
- Broken Bones
Dog attacks can happen anywhere, at any time, to anyone. You may be walking home from the bus or the train, strolling out to the mailbox, or having a picnic in the park. When a dog bites, he exerts extreme force on whatever he has bitten. The most strong set of jaws in the domestic canine world is that of a mastiff with over 500 pounds of pressure per square inch.
While most people don’t own mastiffs prone to biting, any dog bite carries the risk of infection, disease, and injury to your skin, muscles, and bones. If you are bitten by a dog, and the dog’s owner knows the dog has an aggressive history but fails to restrain him, this might count as negligence for a personal injury claim.
Below are three ways that a person may suffer an injury at a construction site.
- Injured by another contractor: Let’s say you’re a carpenter and you’re working with some local masons to build a house. A mason walks by pushing a wheelbarrow full of bricks, and accidentally trips and falls, allowing the wheelbarrow to fall directly on your foot. The wheelbarrow was overfilled, and the mason was pushing it along a poorly cleared path. You may be able to file a personal injury claim against the mason’s company for acting with negligence with regard to how that wheelbarrow of bricks was transported.
- Injured by a product or tool: Tools, just like any other product can be defective. This defect may result from poor design, a lack of safety warnings, or could even be caused by modifications made by a third-party. If the defect results in injury to the person using it, the party responsible may be held liable.
- Safety issues resulting in accidents:: If you are injured by a structure that fails to meet safety standards, you may file a personal injury claim against the company that constructed the structure if there is evidence that this company acted with negligence in its construction or its maintenance.
Most people are aware that texting and driving is a huge problem resulting in many accidents each day, but the problem is much more complex than just texting and driving. Drunk driving, distracted driving, and road rage all play a role in car accidents that can lead to personal injury claims.
- The National Safety Council estimates that 1.6 million crashes occur annually because of cell phone use while operating a car.
- Philadelphia county had the second highest amount of alcohol-related deaths resulting from car accidents in the state. In 2014, there were 18 deaths in Philadelphia County.
- In 2014, Pennsylvania drivers in the 21-25 age group had the highest percentage of alcohol-related driver deaths at 43%.
- Distracted driving includes texting, writing, reading, and driving with headphones in. In 2014 alone, 711 Pennsylvania drivers were cited for driving with headphones in.
- 33% of driver-at-fault accidents are the result of “aggressive” driving behavior, or road rage.
The National Safety Council estimated in 2008 that a person’s odds of dying in a motor vehicle accident during the course of a lifetime were 1 in 98. Those who survive accidents may be eligible to file personal injury claims.
Am I Eligible To File A Personal Injury Claim?
It doesn’t matter what kind of accident you’ve been involved in, the most important thing to do after you’ve been injured is to contact a lawyer to learn more about the legal options available to you.
While it is possible to file a personal injury lawsuit on your own, this type of law is complex. Not only can a lawyer explain all legal avenues available to you, they can also assist in collecting the necessary materials for filing the claim, collect witness testimony, consult with industry experts to compile evidence of negligence, and more.
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