How to Establish Legal Liability in a Personal Injury Case

In personal injury, or “tort” cases, liability is a person or company's legal and financial obligation owed to another party as a result of an accident causing serious injury or the wrongful death of another. Injured parties in personal injury cases may be legally entitled to compensation include past and future lost wages, medical expenses, damages for both physical and emotional pain and suffering and/or for disfigurement. 

Whether an individual is injured in an auto accident, as a result of medical malpractice or on the job, the victim (and his or her attorney) has the responsibility of proving liability.   

Proving Liability

This liability must be proven through credible and relevant evidence that supports the the defendant is legally responsible. The process of determining that liability will vary depending on how an incident occurred and who was at fault. In some cases, numerous parties may be liable for an accident. For example, the process in which liability is determined in a two car car accident will be completely different than that of a defective or faulty medical device.  

In personal injury claims, negligence is the most common type of theory of liability. By definition, negligence is the failure to take reasonable care so as to prevent injury or harm to others. Liability is often determined by several circumstances or factors at play. In order to build a strong case in a personal injury lawsuit, it is important to gather and keep record of: 

  • Witness statements: If at all possible, get and retain the information of any and all relevant witnesses, including their contact information. Witness testimony can sometimes make or break a case for an injured plaintiff.
  • Police reports: Keep a record of law enforcement officers involved in your case. Include their full names, badge numbers and any contact information. Medical charts: Check and retain your medical charts for signatures of doctors, nurses and any other hospital employees who were involved in the treatment of your injuries.
  • Lost wages verification: In addition to a letter from your employer about how many days you missed and how much pay you lost isn't enough. Keep copies of actual pay stubs or other evidence to quantify your losses. Make sure you can contact the supervisor who signed the lost wages verification. 
  • Out-of-pocket receipts: Receipts for prescription and over-the-counter medications, copies of gas receipts (as well as mileage) for driving back and forth to relevant appointments such as the doctor. Be sure the receipts are clearly dated. 

Truthful Apprasial of your Situation

If you have been injured due to the negligence or fault of another individual, individuals or company, it is strongly recommended that you retain a licensed personal injury attorney to represent you and file suit. Please, contact a personal injury lawyer; we are able to provide an honest evaluation of your unique situation, free of charge.

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