Image @ Phillip Pessar
You’re probably used to seeing advertisements for personal injury lawyers on the television. Or perhaps you’ve heard them on the radio. They often mention having an accident that wasn’t your fault. But they aren’t usually very specific about what sort of accident this might be. Sometimes it’s obvious when an accident or injury isn’t your fault. But you might think that you did something to cause it, or you may be having trouble seeing who is to blame. When can you claim compensation for a personal injury or accident? You may be able to do so, but you don’t realize. Or, on the other side of things, you could be looking for someone to blame when there is no one. So how do you work out if you’re likely to gain anything from bringing a case against someone?
The first step in determining whether you can bring a personal injury or accident lawsuit against someone is going over what happened. Carefully write down anything leading up to the accident or injury and anything that could have contributed. Doing this will help you decide who was at fault. If you did nothing wrong, it’s likely that someone else could have prevented the cause of the accident or injury. It helps if you can also determine if anyone else saw what happens, so there are witnesses to corroborate your story.
How Has It Affected You?
You will need to be able to show how your accident or injury has affected you, and what the compensation is for. Make sure you have any evidence of medical bills or loss of income. Medical documents that help to show how you were affected by the accident, either physically or mentally, are helpful. If you decide to hire a lawyer, they can use these documents to help you build a case against the party you want to claim from.
Have You Already Received Compensation?
Has the party at fault offered you compensation through their insurance in the form of medical bills or an additional cash settlement? You could still have grounds for a lawsuit. However, if you accept their offer, you forfeit your right to bring a case against them, except in some extenuating circumstances. If you have already accepted compensation from the at-fault party, a lawsuit is no longer possible. But if you have yet to make a decision, you may decide to sue, instead of accepting their offer.
Talk to a Lawyer
When you think you have a case, it’s time to talk to a lawyer. They can advise you about whether it’s wise to file a lawsuit and your likelihood of winning. You can ask for recommendations from legal advice bureaus, friends or family. Or try searching on the internet, using a phrase such as “Austin Texas personal injury and accident victim lawyers” to find lawyers in your area.
Make sure you do all of this as soon as you are able, because there is a time limit for filing a lawsuit in these cases. If you leave it too long (usually over a year), you probably won’t be able to gain any compensation.