When you’ve suffered an injury and are trying to figure out how to seek justice and what your rights are, it is very easy to get overwhelmed and confused. In fact, it is for this reason that a lot of people give up the fight and don’t get the justice they deserve. Don’t let this be you, though. While it is true that many legal professionals, websites, and the like can be confusing with their fancy jargon, the fact of the matter is that, if you break it down just right, personal injury law is actually quite simple.
To start off with, for example, you’ll often find conflicting definitions of what “personal injury” even means. Really, though, all this term refers to is the harm and/or injury that a person suffers as the result of an accident, such as a car accident or a medical mistake. Whatever the case may be, if a person has suffered a personal injury, he or she can file a claim to take legal action against the person or entity responsible for the injury.
The person or entity upon which the claim is filed is known as the “defendant,” so if you hear this term, simply understand that it means the person you hold responsible in your personal injury claim. You may be asked to prove that this person showed “negligence,” which, in legal terms, means some sort of carelessness that resulted in the accident, such as a driver being drunk or a medical professional not following the appropriate procedure.
In the course of filing your claim, you may also hear the term “damages,” which simply means any and all costs related to the injury that you are seeking retribution for. This might include things like compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, income you missed out on as a result of the injury, and other costs you incurred, such as physical therapy bills.
As you can see, most of these “fancy terms” can actually be broken down quite simply. And, if you find a qualified, personable attorney, you will find it easy to understand these terms (and more!) and their relation to your case. Thus, make your first step, when you’ve suffered a personal injury and are considering filing a claim, finding a qualified attorney who will break these and other terms down for you and walk you through this process step by step.