Different Types of Personal Injury Claims

A personal injury claim can arise when a defendant’s intentional or negligent action causes injury to a plaintiff.  There are a wide variety of circumstances that can lead to a personal injury claim.  Suffering an injury does not always lead to a personal injury claim.  This article will consider some of the most common personal injury claims.

Dog Bites

In dog bite cases, owners of the dog are liable for injuries caused by their dog in most cases.  Of course, if someone other than the owner has the dog in their care and keeping, that person may be liable for any bite or other damage caused by an attack.  If the person who was attacked or bitten was provoking or harassing the dog, and this conduct caused the attack, the dog owner or handler will not be held liable.  This can be a fact specific question for the jury to decide.  Damages may be covered by homeowner’s insurance.

Car Accident Cases

Car accident cases are the most common personal injury claims.  Car accidents usually occur because a driver is being careless or not following the normal rules of driving.  The careless driver can be found liable for injuries and property damage resulting from an accident. In cases involving car accidents, recovery can be from the driver of the vehicle, or, more likely, the driver’s insurance company.

Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice claims arise when a doctor or other medical professional does not provide competent or medically reasonable care and a plaintiff is injured as a result.  Frequently in medical malpractice cases, the biggest and most important issue is defining the medical standard of care in a case and whether that standard of care was met, or not met, in a given case.  This frequently requires the testimony of an expert in the appropriate field.

Most medical malpractice falls into one of three categories:

  • Mistakes in treatment;
  • Improper diagnoses; and
  • Lack of informed consent.

Mistakes in treatment occur when a doctor makes a mistake in the treating of a patient and a competent doctor would not have made the same mistake.  An improper diagnosis occurs when a doctor improperly diagnoses a medical condition when a reasonable and competent doctor would have made a correct diagnosis.  Finally, a lack of informed consent occurs when a doctor does not fully inform a patient about the medical procedure before performing it.  This includes both treatment against a patient’s wishes and the uninformed patient.

Work Related Personal Injury Cases

Work related personal injuries are extremely common.  If a worker sustains an injury due to negligence, he or she may have a basis for a legal claim.  Injuries can include death, back injuries, head injuries and neck injuries, to name just a few possibilities. It is important that a worker understand limits on liability, as in many cases, lawsuits against employers are prohibited.

Defamation:  Libel and Slander

Defamation in the form of libel or slander is the damage to one’s reputation because of untrue statements made by another, either verbally or in writing.  The standard for defamation depends on the status of the plaintiff.  If the plaintiff is an average person, they must show that an untrue statement was made and that it resulted in financial harm.  If the plaintiff is a public figure, or celebrity, they must prove actual malice existed on behalf of the speaker or writer.  This means they must show that the statement was made knowing the statement was untrue or with reckless disregard to its truth.

Slip and Fall Cases

Slip and fall cases are another very common source of personal injury claims.  Property owners are responsible for keeping their property reasonably safe and free of hazards.  People on their property should be able to remain free from injury.  The duty of property owners varies from state to state.  Premises liability law governs slip and fall cases in each state.  The defendant can be found liable if the defendant knew about the obstruction and did nothing about it.  Alternatively, if the property owner should have known about the obstruction because a reasonable person taking care of the property would have known about it, the property owner could be liable.

Assault, Battery and Other Intentional Torts

This type of claim involves an intentional act by a defendant, not some sort of accident or negligent behavior.  This involves a claim where one person harms or injures another with intent to cause the harm or injury.  This behavior almost always involves criminal charges.  Monetary claims would be in addition to any criminal charges.

Injury from a Defective Product

Products are required to be safe when used as intended.  If you suffer an injury while using a product as intended, you may have a personal injury claim.

Injury from a Dangerous Drug

Unfortunately, dangerous drugs are sometimes released.  If you are injured or harmed by a pharmaceutical drug, you may have a cause of action. This may also be in the form of a class action lawsuit.

Injury from Someone’s Negligence

People are required to use a reasonable degree of care in everything they do.  If a failure to do so results in injury, a cause of action could result.  Monetary damages could be recovered.

What Should I Do If I Have Suffered a Personal Injury?

If you have suffered a personal injury, you may have a legal cause of action.  If you do have a cause of action, you may be entitled to compensation for such things as medical bills, lost wages, loss of consortium, pain, and suffering.  If you have been injured and can no longer work at your job due to your injuries, you may be entitled to retraining services.

What Should I Do If a Loved One Has Been Killed in a Personal Injury Case?

Death from a personal injury is not uncommon.  You may be entitled to compensation as outlined above, as well as funeral expenses.  Contact the Fayetteville, Georgia personal injury attorneys of Wade Law Offices for a free consultation.  You can call us directly or fill out our contact form on our website.



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