Find an Affordable Accident Lawyer

Contributor, Benzinga

If you’ve been in an accident because of someone else’s actions, you might be entitled to compensation. Compensation can cover lost wages, medical expenses as well as other costs associated with your injury. 

Working with an injury lawyer will help you decide on the best way to move forward. Our guide will provide you with everything you’ll need to know about injury cases before you hire an attorney. 

Injury Cases

Personal injury cases occur when a person is injured because of another person’s actions. These injures can happen because someone was negligent or incompetent with the way they conducted themselves or managed their property. Car accidents, slip and falls, dog bites, medical malpractice and even defamation of character qualify as personal injury. They can result in physical, financial and psychological harm. As a victim, you are entitled to certain rights. 

Only a personal injury lawyer will be able to examine your situation and determine what you are entitled to. You will most likely need to pay out of pocket for your personal injury lawyer. Your lawyer may charge a flat rate for your case or bill you hourly. Most people find it worthwhile to hire this kind of attorney because the payout from a settlement can cover the costs. 

That said, you don’t need to break the bank to find a quality personal injury attorney. For starters, scope out local lawyers in the area where your injury occurred. Look for professionals who have extensive experience that relates to your specific case. Websites like lawyer.com and rocketlawyer.com are great places to start. In the meantime, it’s a good idea to go over common personal injury cases. The more you know, the better prepared you’ll be to find the lawyer that’s best suited for your situation.

Auto Accident

Everyone dreads a car accident. The costs can add up pretty quickly. You may need to consult with your insurance provider, fix damages to your vehicle and file a police report. It’s even worse if you were injured during the accident. Your attorney can advise you on whether you should settle or take your case to trial.

If you’ve been injured because the other driver was careless, reckless or under the influence, you may be able to file a lawsuit. If you live in a “fault state,” your attorney can help you prepare a case that proves the reckless party was at fault and owes you compensation. Things become more complex in no-fault states. Your insurance provider might be responsible for compensation unless your injuries are severe enough. All in all, expect your case to take anywhere from a couple of months to a few years. 

Slip and Fall

Businesses and property owners have a duty to upkeep and maintain their property with reasonable care. If aisles, floors, sidewalks or passageways are neglected, it’s possible to suffer a slip and fall. When this happens, you may be able to file a lawsuit.

You and your attorney will need to show that the owner of the property is responsible for your accident because they either created the dangerous situation or should have recognized it. You and your attorney will need to collect sufficient evidence to prove that this is true. Make sure to consult with your attorney on what documents you will need to provide. 

Wrongful Death

Wrongful death can arise out of a murder, car accident, medical malpractice or any other valid personal injury claim. If you were close to someone who died because of another person’s actions, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. That person must have been negligent or intentional in their actions to be sued for wrongful death. 

Whether you can legally file a wrongful death lawsuit depends on your relationship with that person and the state you live in. For example in some states, romantic partners are able to file a wrongful death lawsuit but in some states, only spouses can. Only an attorney in your state will be able to provide you with all the information you need on how to proceed. 

Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice happens when a healthcare professional or facility is negligent in their actions and a patient suffers an injury as a result of those actions. Negligent actions can relate to careless errors in diagnosis, testing, treatment, unnecessary surgeries, wrong-site surgeries or not taking into account a patient’s medical history. 

If you or a loved one suffered injuries as a result of improper medical care, you may be able to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Make sure to save all bills and medical documents you receive and consult with an attorney on any additional documents you will need to provide.

Product Liability

Businesses need to ensure the products they sell meet certain safety standards. You may be able to file a product liability lawsuit if you were injured because a product you used came with a design that is inherently dangerous, defective, made with toxic materials or lacks necessary safeguards. You may also be able to file a lawsuit if there were inadequate safety instructions or no warning labels. 

If you became sick because of unknown side-effects from medication or poisoned food, you may also have a valid claim. Make sure to consult with an attorney as soon as possible after your injury to learn about the next steps. 

Workplace Accident

If you’ve been injured on the job you may not be able to file a lawsuit. Depending on the state you live in and the circumstances surrounding your injury, worker’s compensation might be your only means for reimbursement. 

Worker’s compensation programs are set up by states to protect injured workers from financial hardship. You will need to file a claim through your state’s workers’ compensation office. Although you might want to consult with an attorney to learn about all your options, know that most workplace accident cases are settled through workers’ compensation. 

Working with an Injury Lawyer

If you’ve been injured you shouldn’t wait to hire an attorney. But that doesn’t mean you need to rush into anything. Most attorneys will offer free initial consultations. Don’t hesitate to meet with a few lawyers to get a feel for who you want representing you. The right injury lawyer can make all the difference in receiving the compensation you deserve. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long do I have to file a personal accident case?

A: The time limit, otherwise known as the statute of limitations, will vary depending on the type of injury you’ve suffered and the state you live in. Time limits can sometimes range between 1 to 3 years from the date of the accident. 

Q: How do I pay for a lawyer in a personal accident case?

A: Some lawyers will charge flat fees or hourly fees. Most personal injury lawyers will charge a contingency fee. This means they will only be paid after you win your case and receive your settlement. Fees can range from lawyer to lawyer so it’s important to ask these questions upfront before you hire your attorney. 

Q: Will my accident case go to trial?

A:  It depends. Some accident cases are able to be settled out of court and some accident cases go to trial.