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FAQs About Personal Injury Law


Personal injury law can be confusing, so we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions to help you better understand your legal rights and options.

  1. What is personal injury law?

Personal injury law is a branch of civil law that allows individuals who have been injured due to the negligence or intentional actions of another to recover damages. These damages may include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

  1. How do I know if I have a personal injury case?

If you were injured due to the recklessness or carelessness of another person or entity, you may have a personal injury case. However, it is important to speak with an experienced attorney to determine whether or not you have a valid claim.

  1. What are some common types of personal injury cases?

There are many different types of personal injury cases, but some of the most common include car accidents, slip and fall accidents, medical malpractice, and defective products.

  1. How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit?

Each state has what is known as a “statute of limitations” which sets a deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit. In most states, you will have two years from the date of your accident to file a claim. However, it is important to speak with an attorney as soon as possible after your accident to ensure that you do not miss this critical deadline.

  1. Do I need an attorney to handle my personal injury case?

While you are not required to have an attorney to pursue a personal injury claim, it is highly recommended. An experienced personal injury attorney will know how to build a strong case on your behalf and maximize the amount of compensation you receive.

  1. How much will it cost to hire an attorney?

Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they only get paid if you win your case. Contingency fees are typically a percentage of the total settlement or verdict awarded in your case.

  1. How long will my personal injury case take?

The length of time it takes to resolve a personal injury case varies depending on the facts of each individual case. Some cases may be resolved relatively quickly, while others may take months or even years to reach a final resolution.

  1. What is a settlement?

A settlement is an agreement between you and the at-fault party (or their insurance company) to resolve your case without going to trial. If you reach a settlement, you will agree to accept a certain amount of money in exchange for dropping your lawsuit.

  1. What if I do not want to settle my case?

If you do not want to settle your case, you have the right to take your case to trial. However, it is important to keep in mind that going to trial involves risk, and there is no guarantee that you will win your case or receive any compensation if you do.

  1. What if I am not happy with the outcome of my case?

If you are not happy with the outcome of your case, you may have the right to appeal the decision. However, it is important to speak with an attorney before taking any action as there may be deadlines for filing an appeal.

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How Are Personal Injury Awards Calculated?

The amount of a personal injury award is calculated based on a number of factors, including the severity of the injury, the loss of earnings suffered by the victim, and the pain and suffering experienced. In some cases, punitive damages may also be awarded in order to punish the offender and deter others from similar behaviour.

Insurance companies will usually have their own formulas for calculating personal injury awards, but these are not always accurate. It is important to seek legal advice in order to ensure that you receive the full amount that you are entitled to.

Santa Barbara personal injury lawyers will often use a multiplier in order to calculate an appropriate award. This takes into account both economic and non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. The multiplier is usually between 1.5 and 5, depending on the severity of the injuries suffered.

For example, if someone has suffered a broken leg which will take 6 months to heal, they may be awarded $3,000 for their pain and suffering. This is calculated by taking the victim’s total damages ($6,000) and multiplying it by the appropriate multiplier (in this case, 1.5).

It is also important to factor in any lost earnings when calculating a personal injury award. This can be done by estimating the victim’s lost wages for the period of time they are unable to work. In some cases, future lost earnings may also be taken into account.

Once all of these factors have been taken into account, the personal injury lawyer will usually make a settlement offer to the insurance company. If this is rejected, then the case may go to court where a judge will decide on the appropriate amount of damages.

If you have been injured in an accident, it is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible in order to ensure that you receive the full amount of compensation that you are entitled to. A personal injury lawyer will be able to guide you through the process and help you get the maximum award possible.

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