Any injury can be extremely upsetting, and causes a lot of problems in your day to day life no matter the severity. Injuries caused by someone else's actions can be extremely frustrating in addition to the expected inconveniences, because it was someone else's negligence or decision to act irresponsibly that got you into this situation to begin with. In these cases, personal injury lawsuits can be an effective way to seek financial compensation for all of the different impacts that these injuries have on your life, and go beyond simple reimbursement for things like medical expenses and lost wages.
The team at Timothy J. Ryan & Associates is ready to take your case as soon as possible. We cover a wide range of injuries in many different practice areas, and our experience will be a major asset for getting you the outcome you deserve. Finding a personal injury attorney in Anaheim isn't difficult, but finding an attorney that you are fully confident in, and someone who will fight to ensure that every aspect of your case is addressed, is extremely important for a positive and fair outcome. We take pride in the work we do with our clients and will be fighting for the compensation that you deserve.
Contact us as soon as possible to schedule a free consultation, where you will be able to discuss the specifics of your injuries, the incident that caused them, and any steps that you have already taken towards justice. In addition, you will be able to understand how our team can help, our successes with cases similar to your own, and get a better idea of your personal rapport with the attorney who will be taking your case. With a reliable lawyer on your side, you can focus on recovery without stress getting in the way. Read more below about how a personal injury attorney can help your case, and contact us now.
What Is a Personal Injury?
In purely legal terms, a personal injury is one that someone sustains either physically or emotionally, as opposed to injuries that occur to their property. For example, in a car accident, a person may suffer property injuries when their car is damaged, and may also suffer personal injuries in the form of broken bones, lacerations, and other physical injuries, as well as emotional issues like fear and suffering. These types of injuries are covered under what is known as “tort law,” as opposed to criminal law.
Personal injury lawsuits are intended to seek financial compensation for these types of injuries, and typically go beyond the amount that an insurance company will offer for their settlement when the victim is dealing directly with an insurance representative. Personal injury attorneys focus on these types of cases, and work towards getting the most amount of money for their clients through either a settlement or a full court case.
What Are Some Common Causes of Personal Injuries?
There are many different ways that someone can suffer a personal injury, but California civil courts see some injuries and causes of injuries more than others. It is important to remember that no two accident is alike, and no two injuries are the same, meaning that if your injuries do not resemble anything listed below, it does not mean that you do not have a case. Take a look at these common injuries, and contact our team today to discuss your own situation and learn about how we can help.
Car accidents are extremely common in California, meaning that anyone who heads out onto the road is at risk of being injured in a collision. Common injuries from car accidents include bone fractures, concussions and traumatic brain injuries, serious bruising or hematomas, whiplash, and more. Insurance companies often deal directly with the victims of their clients' actions and will attempt to settle quickly and inexpensively. The offer that a car insurance company will make is nowhere near the amount you are rightfully owed, and should never be accepted without the advice of an attorney.
Drunk driving is a criminal offense, and is also a valid reason for a victim to seek compensation in the form of a personal injury lawsuit. The driver acted recklessly by operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, and put everyone on the road at risk. If the accident was their fault, and people were injured as a result, they should be held liable.
Slip and Fall
A slip and fall is also known as a “premise liability,” and happens when someone is injured while visiting property that is managed by another party, due to unsafe conditions. These conditions could be things like broken or missing handrails, unsafe stairs, slippery floors due to ice or water, falling objects, and more. These accidents can result in broken bones, spinal cord injuries, or other serious damage to the victim.
Medical malpractice comes in many different varieties, but all stem from a patient's trust in their medical professional, and that professional's breach of their responsibility to keep their patient safe. This could be someone like a misdiagnosis or a failure to diagnose, to something like a surgical mix-up like performing the wrong procedure, or leaving medical tools inside the body after the operation.
Product liability injuries happen when a product causes injury to the user because of a defect in design or manufacture, or because of a failure to properly warn the user against inherent risks of using the product. If a user injures themselves during the normal use of a product, having been fairly warned of the risks, this likely does not count as a product liability issue; for example, hitting yourself in the hand with a hammer is user error, not a defect of the hammer.
Other Personal Injuries
Remember, there are many different ways where someone can be injured as a result of someone else's actions, negligence, or malice that will be considered a personal injury, and is the valid basis for a lawsuit. Contact the team at Timothy J. Ryan & Associates to speak with an attorney about your own situation as soon as possible, so that you can learn about your rights and options in your specific case.
How Do Personal Injury Lawsuits Work?
In order for a victim to seek financial compensation in a personal injury lawsuit, they must first be able to prove a few basic things about the incident:
- The defendant in the case had a “duty of reasonable care” to the victim, meaning that they had a duty to keep the victim safe (by not driving drunk, by stopping at a red light, etc).
- The defendant breached their duty of reasonable care, and acted in a way that put the victim at risk.
- The breach of reasonable care caused an accident or some other situation that led to the victim's injuries.
- The victim's injuries caused damages, either emotionally or physically, as well as financially.
When a victim is able to prove these four points to a judge and jury, they will use these four points as the foundation of their case as they make their arguments for the amount of money that they are owed for their injuries and suffering. There are many different factors that go into determining the amount that the victim and their personal injury lawyer will seek, some of which are more difficult or abstract than the others. Some of these factors are explained below. An experienced attorney will have a good understanding of each of these factors, how to quantify them, and how to make the overall case for compensation clear and understandable to a jury.
How Much Money Is a Personal Injury Lawsuit Worth?
As you can imagine, there are a wide range of factors that go into determining the amount that you and your attorney will seek from the defendant and possibly their insurance company. Damages are divided into “compensatory” and “punitive” damages. Punitive damages are awarded by a jury, and are not requested by the victim and their attorney. They are awarded in order to punish the defendant for their actions. Since we will not be factoring them into the amount we will seek for your injuries, we will only discuss compensatory damages in greater detail below.
Compensatory damages are divided into economic and non-economic damages, which each address a different type of impact from the injury:
Economic damages are the damages that have measurable financial impacts on the victim. This includes things like medical expenses, surgical costs, recovery costs, and lost wages. In addition, any possible future medical expenses or reduced earning capacity will be included into these damages as well. Essentially, economic damages are intended to repay the victim for measurable financial losses, whether they come from expenses or lost earnings.
Non-economic damages seek to compensate the victim for the parts of their injuries that do not have measurable financial values, such as emotional struggles. These types of damages include things like pain and suffering, depression, fear, loss of enjoyment, and other things of that nature.
Since there is no simple way to submit invoices and income statements to prove the amount owed, it is common that a “multiplier” is used instead – a number used to indicate the severity of these impacts on the victims life. For example: if a victim was seeking $100,000 in economic damages and had a multiplier of 5x, they would seek an additional $500,000 (5 x economic damages) in non-economic damages to account for these injuries. California has a $250,000 cap on medical malpractice non-economic damages.
Contact Us Today
If you would like to learn more about your options for a personal injury lawsuit, or get started with an experienced personal injury attorney in Anaheim today, contact us as soon as possible to begin working on your case.