You may have a valid personal injury claim when you suffer injuries caused by a third party. Among the many questions you may have concerning your claim, you may wonder whether you have a good chance of winning your personal injury case and obtaining fair compensation.
Your odds of winning your case are highly dependent on various factors. An experienced Philadelphia car accident attorney can review the specifics of your case, give you personalized information regarding your claim and chances of winning, and represent your best interests throughout your case.
What Is a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
A personal injury case arises when you suffer physical harm at the hands of another. Personal injury law, or tort law, protects injured victims, allowing them to pursue justice and compensation for the wrongs done unto them.
Personal injury law is an umbrella with several other subcategories under it, including premises liability, product liability, and medical malpractice law. The laws that apply to your case depend on your accident and injuries.
A personal injury attorney dedicates their practice to helping injured victims recover monetarily for their incident-related losses. Therefore, if you sustain harm in an unfortunate accident or incident caused by another, a personal injury lawyer can be your best ally.
Common Types of Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury cases arise when victims suffer injuries, either due to negligence or intentional actions or omissions.
Some of the most common kinds of personal injury cases include:
- Vehicular collisions, including auto, truck, and motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Premises liability, like slip and falls
- Product liability
- Workplace accidents
- Nursing home abuse
Additionally, wrongful death cases also fall under personal injury law. These cases are different from other types of personal injury cases because the victim has passed away. Instead of the victim filing their claim, the deceased victim’s family files the lawsuit and recovers monetarily for the untimely loss of their loved one.
Winning By Settlement
A settlement voluntarily resolves your civil dispute. When you settle your claim, your attorney and the other party agree to a monetary figure for your accident-related injuries and losses. Obtaining a fair settlement can be particularly challenging in some cases.
Depending on the nature of your case, you may start by filing an insurance claim. After investigating your accident and evaluating your losses, the insurer may approve your claim and provide a settlement offer. However, the initial offer may not be fair, and you may need to engage in settlement negotiations.
Sometimes, you can negotiate a settlement even before filing a personal injury lawsuit. Still, if your insurance claim does not yield beneficial results, filing a lawsuit may be necessary to continue the pursuit of favorable compensation.
When you can secure a good settlement, you must sign a release. By signing this release, you agree to accept the settlement check and, in exchange, avoid pursuing further compensation for the same claim in the future.
Winning at Trial
Even if you file a personal injury lawsuit, this does not necessarily mean your case will go to trial. In fact, about 95 percent of personal injury cases settle pre-trial. This means both parties settle before the case ever goes to court.
While settling before going to trial is ideal, taking your case to court doesn’t completely eliminate the possibility of settling. Your case can still settle, even if you’re already trying your case.
If a settlement is not in the cards, you can present your case at trial. During trial, a judge, or a judge and jury, will listen to both sides and their arguments. They’ll review the facts and evidence and hear testimony to render their decision.
Winning at trial means the judge or jury decides you should receive monetary relief, and enters a judgment in your favor. They also decide what damages you receive. Your lawyer can request certain relief from the court, but it’s ultimately up to the judge or jury to decide how much you get.
The main detriment to going to trial is having little control over the monetary recovery you receive. In settlement negotiations, your lawyer’s negotiation skills influence the outcome, and they can fight for a certain amount.
During trial, the judge or jury decides. This is why personal injury attorneys try so hard to settle.
Factors Influencing Your Odds of a Successful Personal Injury Case Result
Several factors play a role in increasing (or decreasing) the odds of you winning your personal injury case. The following are some of the most significant details that can help achieve a favorable case result.
Your Lawyer’s Skill and Experience
When choosing an attorney to handle your personal injury claim, choose wisely. Not every lawyer is right for your case, as attorneys are not one-size-fits-all. In actuality, your attorney’s background, skills, and experience can heavily influence your case result.
The best lawyer for your personal injury case should have:
- Years of experience handling personal injury cases, specifically in the area of law that dictates your situation
- A strong track record of good case outcomes
- Previous clients who are content with the attorney’s services
- Respect and recognition from their legal community
A strong personal injury lawyer can give you a leg up in your lawsuit.
These attorneys have the skills and resources to effectively and promptly handle the most important case tasks, including, but not limited to:
- Investigating your accident
- Calculating your damages
- Requesting and obtaining pertinent evidence
- Determining the cause of your injuries
- Establishing the other party’s liability
- Communicating with insurance companies and other lawyers
- Negotiating for a fair settlement
- Representing you in court
Additionally, when you have a lawyer handling your personal injury case, you don’t need to worry about falling for the insurance company’s tactics or getting taken advantage of in any way.
A seasoned personal injury lawyer will protect you and your rights to beneficial compensation.
The Strength of Your Case
Just because you’ve suffered injuries does not necessarily mean you have a valid personal injury case. An attorney must thoroughly review the details of the incident to decipher whether you have a claim.
One of the keys to winning a personal injury case is liability. Without proving the other party’s wrongdoing, you will not have a strong enough case.
Many personal injury cases rest upon a theory of negligence, which requires you to prove specific details:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care
- The defendant violated their duty of care through action or inaction
- The defendant’s behavior caused your accident and injuries
- You suffered monetary and non-monetary damages as a result
Personal injury lawyers know a weak case is much less likely to win. Therefore, if you have a viable claim, you can rely on your attorney to do everything possible to establish liability, prove the validity of your losses, and get a favorable case result.
Availability of Helpful Evidence
It’s not enough to simply state the other party caused your injuries through their wrongful actions. You must also provide proof. Evidence is necessary to strengthen your case and substantiate your claims.
Some of the evidence personal injury attorneys most often use includes:
- Photos and videos
- Surveillance footage
- Traffic camera footage
- Police reports
- Medical records
- Witness statements
- Expert testimony
When you file a personal injury lawsuit, your case will go through a period that is called discovery. During this time, your attorney and the opposing party can request and obtain evidence and use legal tools to get helpful information, like requests for production and depositions.
Evidence isn’t just necessary to establish cause and liability; it also proves your damages. Certain documentation, like medical bills, can serve as evidence to prove the compensation you deserve.
Protecting Your Rights and Increasing Your Chances of a Favorable Outcome
Your personal injury attorney can protect your rights and improve your chances of getting a case win. However, it’s not entirely up to your lawyer.
You, too, can take certain steps to safeguard your rights and strengthen the likelihood of obtaining compensation.
A personal injury attorney can provide personalized advice and recommendations on what to do and not do after your accident. Generally, doing the following can help your personal injury case.
Seek Medical Care
Getting medical attention is key when you suffer injuries due to another’s wrongful actions. You need this for your overall health and well-being and your claim.
When you seek medical care, doctors should document everything in your medical records. Failing to get treatment or delaying medical care can hurt both your health and your personal injury case.
Complete Your Medical Treatment
Getting medical care is only part of the deal; following through with your medical treatment is the other piece.
As mentioned, everything is in your medical records. When your records reflect that you either refused to follow your treatment plan or didn’t follow it as your physician recommended, the insurance company can use this to its advantage. They can use this information to minimize the severity of your injuries and claims.
Talk to your doctor and work with them to create the best medical treatment plan for you. Never abandon your treatment, as this can reduce the monetary recovery you receive.
Collect Evidence and Documentation
As soon as you can, gather evidence and documentation. Keep anything you feel may benefit your case and give it to your lawyer.
Along with the evidence that’s easy to collect, like cell phone photos and videos, consider what else may help your personal injury claim. For example, after an accident, write down every detail you remember, as memories can quickly fade. You can also keep a pain journal to document your injuries, symptoms, and progression during your recovery.
Maintain your records and any bills that come in for anything accident-related. Your attorney can use these as evidence of your monetary losses.
Avoid Making Statements Against Your Interest
No matter what, avoid saying too much after an unfortunate accident or incident. Statements against interest are statements you make that can easily work against you.
Following an accident or stressful incident, you may be nervous and say things you might not normally say.
Statements to avoid include “It’s my fault,” “I’m not sure what happened,” and “I didn’t suffer any injuries.”
Even if it might not seem like a big deal, any of these statements can hurt your ability to win your personal injury case.
Don’t Fall for the Insurance Company’s Traps
Insurance companies are synonymous with being sneaky and difficult to deal with. They have their tried and true tactics to limit their liability, minimize the severity of your injuries and losses, and avoid paying you what your claim is worth.
During your claim, the insurance company may utilize some of their common schemes, including offering you a quick, lowball settlement offer or asking for a recorded statement.
When you hire a personal injury attorney, make sure all communications go through them to avoid falling into one of their traps.
Act Quickly After Your Accident
After suffering injuries, your focus might entirely be on your recovery. While that’s important, you shouldn’t forget to seek legal assistance and take action on your case.
Depending on your state’s statute of limitations laws, you only have a limited time to file a personal injury lawsuit in court. Therefore, acting quickly following your accident can benefit your case and get compensation much quicker.
Increase Your Chances of Winning Your Personal Injury Case with a Personal Injury Attorney
One of the best things you can do for your case is to hire an experienced Philadelphia personal injury attorney. Handling your case alone probably will not yield favorable results.
A lawyer can represent your best interests throughout your case and fight aggressively to win your lawsuit.