Accident and injury law is also referred to as “Personal Injury Law" and includes slip and fall, car, truck, motorcycle, boat, bicycle, airplane, cruise ship, bus, amusement park and ATV accidents. Drunk driving and distracted driver accidents as well as dog bites, medical malpractice, defective product, worker’s compensation, and nursing home abuse are also covered by personal injury law. A victim of any of these events may have broken bones, scars, bruises, paralysis, amputations, injury to their brain, spine or eye, or they may have died because of the incident.
Financial Compensation for Injured Persons
The goal of the law is to make the injured person whole; meaning, to put the injured person back in the position they would have been but for the accident. Courts can’t turn back the hands of time and prevent injuries from occurring, so they do their best to provide financial compensation to make up for injuries.
Injured persons can recover lost wages and benefits, past and future medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses, and pain and suffering damages. If the act that caused the injury is particularly egregious, then punitive damages may be awarded as a punishment to the actor.
The spouses and families of injured persons can receive financial compensation as well, for all of the above if the injured person died, and for losses they suffered because of a strain in their relationship with the injured person because of the injury.
Most accident and injury cases proceed on a negligence theory, meaning that the injured person must prove that his or her injuries were caused by the act or failure to act of another individual or company.
Proving negligence has three prongs. In other words, the injured person must show, by a preponderance of the evidence, that:
- The defendant had a duty to the injured person,
- The defendant’s act or failure to act was not reasonable and caused the injured person’s injuries, and
- The injured person suffered some form of injury as to be entitled to damages