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Legal Blog

What Injuries Can You File a Lawsuit For?

Most people will be involved in some sort of accident or incident that causes an injury at some point in their lives. Some injuries are true accidents, while others are caused by the negligent actions or inaction of an individual or entity. You could suffer harm through a slip and fall, a car accident, or an injury in the workplace, among other ways.

Injuries caused by someone else’s negligence are unacceptable. You should not have to pay for the consequences of another’s carelessness or malice. When your injuries are legally the fault of someone else, you may have a valid claim that needs professional legal representation from a reputable personal injury attorney.

Common Situations When You May File a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Sometimes, an accident is simply an accident without anyone to blame. In many situations, however, another person’s negligence is the cause, and you deserve to seek compensation for the harm they’ve caused you. There are many circumstances where you can hold the people or entities responsible accountable for their actions, including:

  • Animal attacks and dog bites
  • Birth injuries
  • Car accidents
  • Child injuries
  • Defective products (also known as product liability)
  • Maritime accidents
  • Slip and fall (also known as premises liability)
  • Trucking accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Wrongful death

The injuries you could suffer from any of the above can result in long-lasting and potentially debilitating problems. Victims are often left with physical and emotional trauma that affects them for months, years, or even the rest of their lives. The bills associated with these injuries can spiral into astronomical amounts, leaving a family financially devastated unless they receive compensation from the at-fault party.

Proving Negligence to Seek Damages in a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Before you file a personal injury lawsuit in Texas, you must first be able to prove that you have a valid legal claim. You may first file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company in some situations, such as car accidents, premises liability, or product liability cases. However, many injuries caused by the negligence of another will require you to file a personal injury lawsuit.

Sometimes, the at-fault party’s insurance company will try to deny you fair compensation. Insurance adjusters are more interested in protecting their profits than ensuring your financial needs are met. They will do everything they can to delay, minimize, or deny your claim. Negotiating with them successfully may be beyond your capabilities.

If they do not meet your demands, you will need to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party to help you recover compensation for damages that resulted from your accident. It will be essential to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to represent you and your interests.

The Four Elements of Negligence

In order for your injury claim to be successful through an insurance claim or lawsuit, you will have to prove that the person or entity you are making a claim against was negligent in some way and that negligence caused your injuries. This means you must prove that, more likely than not, the cause and extent of your injuries were the other party’s fault.

If your injuries were caused by a defective product or workplace accident, the claim may involve different laws that your lawyer will help you navigate. Regardless of your situation, your attorney will need to investigate your claim and prove the four elements of negligence:

  1. The defendant owed you a duty of care.
  2. They failed to uphold that duty by their actions or inactions.
  3. You suffered injuries and damages as a direct result of their failure.
  4. You have expenses related to your injuries and damages that must be repaid by the defendant.

Common Forms of Evidence Used in a Personal Injury Case

What Injuries Can You File a Lawsuit For?Performing a thorough investigation of your case is an essential part of your attorney’s job. They and their team of legal professionals will identify all liable parties, examine the circumstances of your case, and organize the evidence to present a robust case. This material will consist of information and documentation from various credible sources.

There are different kinds of evidence you can use to prove your claim, assuming the kind of lawsuit requires you to establish the negligence of the at-fault party. The most common types of evidence used include:

  • Reports and presentations from accident reconstruction experts for car, truck, and other vehicle accidents
  • Documents that show time missed from work, as well as previous income statements
  • Incident reports documented at accident scene
  • Medical treatment records that document your injuries
  • Police reports
  • Photos and videos of the scene of the accident
  • Testimony from a doctor or medical expert regarding the cause of your injuries
  • Witness statements

Determining if you have sufficient evidence to file a lawsuit can be complicated, especially if you are trying to take on an insurance company or the at-fault party on your own. A personal injury attorney can provide legal services to any injury victim hurt as the result of negligence or the wrongful behavior of another party.

Don’t Delay – The Statute of Limitations May Run Out

A critical consideration when deciding if you should pursue a personal injury lawsuit is the statute of limitations. In Texas, personal injury cases must be filed within two years of the date of the injury. In some situations, such as when filing against a government agency, you may have even less time. Waiting too long can result in losing your ability to seek compensation through the court system.

Working with a personal injury law firm that has the skill and knowledge of the law to prevent this problem allows you to focus on healing from your injuries instead of fighting with insurance companies and figuring out confusing legal paperwork.

How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Strengthen Your Lawsuit

After contacting an experienced trial lawyer and discussing your unique situation, they will begin to gather evidence supporting your claim and will communicate with insurers on your behalf. They will also seek full and fair financial compensation for the damages you suffered. Lawyers may attempt to negotiate a settlement, or if a settlement cannot be reached, they will take your case to trial and represent you in court.

The advantage of working with a skilled attorney is their knowledge and experience with the law. They are aware of all the underhanded tactics used by insurance adjusters and can fight back to protect your rights and financial interests. They can review any offers you receive and advise you whether they think it’s too low for your needs. Your attorney can create an estimate of your current and projected expenses to ensure you get the full compensation you need.

They will also prepare your case for the potential of going to trial from the beginning. This prevents them from losing valuable time getting ready for court. You can focus on recovering from your injuries while they focus on achieving the best possible outcome for your lawsuit. At The Krist Law Firm, P.C., we go to work for you right away and do not rest until your case is settled or won at trial.

Damages You Can Seek in a Personal Injury Lawsuit

In Texas, personal injury damages typically fall into two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic are ones with a fixed value, while non-economic are more subjective. If your injuries were the result of intentional or malicious behavior, your lawyer may be able to claim a third type of damages – punitive damages, designed to punish the wrongdoer.

Common damages we include in our demands for personal injury clients include:

  • Ambulance transport fees
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Doctor visits
  • Emergency room treatment
  • Hospital stays
  • Loss of commissions on sales
  • Loss of income potential or loss of earning
  • Loss of potential bonuses
  • Lost wages
  • Medication costs
  • Nursing services
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation

While non-economic damages are related to the way your life has been impacted by your accident and do not have an intrinsic monetary value, they are no less important to your case. Quantifying non-economic damages can be a challenge. However, your personal injury lawyer will know how to demonstrate their value to the court.

Some of these subjective losses include:

  • Amputation
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Emotional distress, mental anguish, or trauma
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of personal and professional reputation
  • Pain and suffering
  • Permanent disability

Punitive Damages

When the actions of the defendant were especially egregious, negligent, or malicious, your personal injury lawyer may ask the court to grant punitive damages. Sometimes called exemplary damages, in most cases, these are left to the discretion of the judge.

In Texas, punitive damages can only be awarded when other damages have been won in a case. They are limited, or capped, at whichever is greater:

  • $200,000
  • Two times the amount of economic damages + non-economic damages up to $750,000

Punitive damages are awarded separately from the compensatory damages listed above and are meant to punish the defendant harshly. The main goal is to deter both the defendant and any other person or entity from engaging in similar behaviors in the future.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Another kind of personal injury that can result from any of the situations we’ve discussed is a wrongful death. When your loved one is killed right away or dies later from their injuries, you, as a surviving family member, can work with an attorney to file a wrongful death claim.

Wrongful death lawsuits can be filed when the actions of the defendant cause an otherwise preventable fatality. These are common in work accidents, car accidents, and product liability claims. Your attorney must be able to show that the death should have or could have been avoided, but wasn’t because of the defendant’s actions or inactions.

You can seek compensation for all medical expenses of the deceased, as well as their burial and funeral costs, loss of financial support for their children and spouse, loss of companionship and guidance, and your own grief. Spouses, children, and parents of the victim are eligible to file this kind of claim.

What Injuries Can You File a Lawsuit For? Contact Our Attorneys Today

Dealing with the complexities of a personal injury case can be overwhelming for anyone, especially while you are focusing on recovering from your injuries. You don’t need to go through this on your own. Our skilled Houston personal injury lawyers can take on the work of pursuing a claim for compensation.

The Krist Law Firm, P.C., is led by Scott Krist, who is proud of his reputation as a compassionate and gifted attorney who learned from his father, famed Texas trial lawyer Ronald Krist. The law firm has taken on cases other lawyers would not face, with successful outcomes that secured millions for its clients. We are confident we can provide the same quality legal representation for you, starting with a free initial case review.

Our goal is to be there for you and your loved ones through every step of the process and to give you the peace of mind you need to recover following the trauma of your accident. Contact The Krist Law Firm, P.C. to discuss your situation with an accomplished personal injury attorney at no cost today.