When speaking in legal terms, a personal injury is when someone gets injured or becomes unwell because of the negligent, malicious, or reckless behavior of someone else. When this happens, many personal injury victims file personal injury claims against the party or parties that harmed them.
Victims who have been successful in getting compensation for expenses related to their injury recommend enlisting the help of a reputable attorney to help you seek compensation for personal injury claims.
Personal Injury Lawyer
A personal injury lawyer is someone who is educated in personal injury law. A personal injury lawyer is typically a lawyer who defends a client’s rights by pursuing monetary compensation from the party or parties’ that caused a client’s injury or illness.
Personal injury lawyers typically work on a contingency basis. This means that a client does not have to pay for their services unless their lawyer is successful in negotiating a settlement, or wins their case in court. The agreement for how much money a lawyer is going to be entitled to is usually set upfront and is a percentage of the total amount of money the lawyer helped their client get.
Lawyers Compared to Attorneys
Make sure that a lawyer you are interested in retaining is
actually an attorney even though they may refer to themselves as a lawyer. People in the United States often use the terms lawyer and attorney interchangeably but technically, a person can call themselves a lawyer if they have a law degree but no license. A person is not an attorney if they do not have a law degree from a law school in the United States and a valid license to practice in the jurisdiction where they practice law.
You want to be sure that your lawyer can represent you in court if this is what it takes to get you the compensation you deserve.
Personal Injury Plaintiffs & Defendants
Even though a personal injury lawyer is defending a client’s right in a personal injury case, their client is the plaintiff in the case and the party that caused the plaintiff to become unwell is called the defendant.
Personal Injury Claim Process
Many personal injury victims who have been successful in getting the compensation they are entitled to, know that they would not have been able to do this without their lawyer.
While you are not required to be represented by an attorney when you make a personal injury claim, it can be difficult and arduous to do this as a lay person. There are many deadlines that need to be complied with and unfamiliar procedures that need to be followed in order to successfully file a claim. Once this is done, a personal injury lawyer will typically try to negotiate a settlement with the defendant’s lawyer and/or insurance company. If the defendant does not offer a suitable settlement amount, the plaintiff will typically sue the defendant in court even though in some circumstances, the defendant may choose to not pursue this. Whiles laws differ from state to state, many states allow a plaintiff to request whether they want a bench trial, a trial that is tried in front of and decided by a judge, or a jury trial that is decided by a jury that is instructed by a judge. Once both sides have provided all the evidence they want to present to support their side, a decision is made. Sometimes these decisions are made quickly, on the same day a case finishes, other times it can take weeks.