• Do you have questions about personal injury lawsuits?
  • November 19, 2010
  • Law Firm: The Mason Law Firm - Santa Clarita Office
  • Personal injury refers to fatal, physical and/or emotional injuries suffered by a person as a result of an incident.  Classic examples of personal injuries are those sustained by drivers, passengers, or pedestrians involved in car accidents, bus accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents or bike accidents.  Other examples include injuries sustained in slip and falls, in construction site accidents, from dog bites, from burns (burn injuries), from food poisoning, or from using defective products.

    In a personal injury lawsuit, the injured party can seek recovery of economic damages, which include past and future medical bills, property damage, and past and future income.  Additionally, the injured party can seek recovery of non-economic damages, i.e. pain and suffering.

    If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, obtain the other driver’s name, address, driver’s license number, insurance and vehicle information, even if you feel no pain.  It is important to note that people often do not feel pain immediately following the accident but feel the onset of pain days following the accident.

    If you are involved in a slip and fall, find out what caused your fall and if possible, take pictures.  Also, report the incident to the proper person, such as the manager.

    Do not talk about the cause of the incident with anyone.  Remember, things you say to anyone other than your attorney are generally not privileged and are discoverable.

    If you are involved in a personal injury event, such as a motor vehicle accident, slip and fall or dog bite, you should also seek medical care as soon as possible.  Early treatment is beneficial to you and your case.  If you cannot afford paying for treatments, an attorney may be able find you a provider who will treat you on a lien basis and you do not have to pay for the treatments until your case settles.  

    Also, remember that most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning that they take no money from you unless you obtain a settlement or judgment against the adverse party.  

    Generally, your attorney will negotiate with the adverse party’s insurer to try to settle before filing a lawsuit.  If negotiations break down, you will then need to file a lawsuit.  Be mindful that the only time you need to personally appear in court will likely be for trial, and since 98% of cases settle before trial, you may never have to personally appear in court.

    You should never feel guilty or embarrassed for filing a lawsuit.  Filing a lawsuit is the best way to protect yourself.  You need medical attention to resolve your current pain and to make that you suffer from no long term effects.