An accident can be over in a heartbeat, but the repercussions may last for months or years and hugely disrupt your life. If you’ve been injured in an accident in San Antonio, a personal injury lawyer may be able to help you recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, emotional distress, and any other losses you’ve suffered. Each of the following eight common types of accident may be a justification for a personal injury claim.
The 8 Most Common Types of Personal Injury Claims
Car Accident Claims
There are over six million car accidents in the US every year, many of which result in insurance claims. When one driver is responsible for an accident, the other driver may often seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company, especially in at-fault states like Texas. Personal injury claims are common for accidents involving cars, motorcycles, trucks, and pedestrians, although each auto accident type has its own nuances and challenges to overcome.
As with any personal injury case, the value of a car accident claim hinges on proving the other driver’s liability. Evidence should ideally be collected promptly at the scene of the accident, and a skillful car accident lawyer can often retain accident reconstruction experts and other proof to further strengthen a claim.
Medical Malpractice Claims
A shocking 10% of all deaths in the US are caused by medical errors. Because of this, medical malpractice claims are also extremely common, although they tend to be far more complex and difficult to win than car accident claims. One of the problems with medical malpractice claims is that unintended injuries sometimes occur during medical treatment even when the doctor acts properly, with all due skill and care.
For a medical malpractice claim to be valid, the injured victim needs to prove that the doctor acted with negligence: they breached their duty of care toward their patient. Given how complicated and specialized modern medicine is, this can oftentimes be an uphill battle. It usually takes a seasoned medical malpractice lawyer to fully investigate a case, prove the doctor’s negligence, and negotiate a full and fair settlement.
Product Liability Claims
We like to think that all products we use are constructed with great care and undergo rigorous testing to ensure the safety of the customer. But errors of negligence often occur in the design, manufacturing, labeling, or testing process, which sometimes leads to the user suffering severe injury or illness. Defective children’s toys, auto parts, home improvement tools, medical devices, medicines, kitchen equipment, and many other kinds of products can cause injury or even death.
Product liability claims are sometimes class action lawsuits with thousands of injured claimants filing against one company. They can be difficult to prove and win because the corporate defendant often has strong legal defenses and may claim that the injuries were caused elsewhere or the customer used the product incorrectly. Despite these challenges, when a product liability claim is successful, the settlement payout tends to be larger than many other types of personal injury claims.
Premises Liability Claims
Slip-and-fall accidents and other premises liability accidents are also unfortunately common. If you had an accident because of hazardous conditions on someone else’s property, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against them. This will usually require proving that the property owner was aware of the hazard and hadn’t adequately taken action to remedy it or at least warn visitors about it.
Proving the property owner’s negligence can be tough if there were no eyewitnesses or surveillance camera footage to prove that the accident happened as you claim. Some of the more common premises liability accidents include slips, trips, falls, collapsing stairs, floors, or ceilings, falling tree branches or other objects, elevator and escalator accidents, fires, floods, negligent security, and swimming pool accidents.
Workplace Injury Claims
Every year sees about 2.6 million workplace accidents and injuries, 5,000 of which are fatal. Injuries suffered at work are technically a type of premises liability claim, but workplace injury claims tend to follow a very different process from other premises liability claims. In almost all workplace injury cases, the employer will have workers’ compensation, which will cover the injured party’s medical bills and lost wages up to a certain point.
Because of workers’ compensation, individuals injured while at work usually find it hard to sue for additional non-economic damages such as emotional distress or loss of enjoyment in life. But if a third party such as another employee was partly or wholly to blame for the accident, then the injured victim may pursue an additional personal injury claim against that third party in order to attain more extensive damages.
Dog Bite Claims
Being bitten by a dog can be an awful experience, causing terrible injuries, scarring, and psychological trauma, especially when the victim is very young. When a dog attacks someone, the owner is held responsible. All dog owners are expected to properly raise and train their pets, or keep their dogs properly contained in the case of aggressive animals such as guard dogs.
Texas has a one-bite law for dog attacks. This law means that the dog is allowed one attack before the owner is considered liable. So if you’re bitten by a dog, you and your attorney must prove that the dog has previously attacked or demonstrated an aggressive disposition in the past in order to win your claim. This can sometimes make dog bite claims difficult to win.
Wrongful Death Claims
Any of the aforementioned accidents may cause the death of the injured victim. When someone is killed as a result of another party’s negligence, the surviving family members may file a wrongful death claim against the responsible party. Although not physically injured themselves, the family members may still have suffered immensely.
With the help of a personal injury lawyer, they may seek damages for emotional suffering and loss of consortium: the loss of an important relationship with all of its concomitant benefits. The surviving family members may also have funeral costs and hospital bills to cover, which they have a right to recover from the liable party.
Assault and Battery Claims
Any situation where the injured party was assaulted may result in both criminal charges against the defendant and also a personal injury claim or civil lawsuit. Most personal injury claims don’t involve criminal charges because accidental harm resulting from negligence isn’t considered a crime unless the defendant acted with gross negligence such as drunk driving. But willful assault is most definitely a crime.
Personal injury claims for assault are quite common. If you’ve been harmed by an assault, you may claim damages for your medical bills, lost income, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment in life, and any other losses you’ve suffered. Your lawyer may also recommend that you file a lawsuit and take the case to court in order to pursue punitive damages in addition to your compensatory damages.
How a San Antonio Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
Whatever type of accident you’ve experienced, your chances of recovering fair compensation for your losses will almost always be increased with an experienced attorney by your side. A personal injury lawyer can evaluate your claim and calculate the full damages you may seek to recover.
They can then collect evidence to prove the liable party’s negligence, negotiate with the insurance company, and try your case before a judge and jury if necessary. As experts in personal injury law, attorneys can guide you from the very beginning of your claim and make sure that you avoid common mistakes and pitfalls throughout the entire claims process.
If you’ve been injured in San Antonio, contact Gamez Law Firm today
at 210-951-2024 for a free consultation. Our experienced attorneys can communicate with the insurance company for you and fight hard to win the full compensation you deserve.