If someone else’s actions injured you, you might have a valid injury claim. However, every situation is different. Our lawyers provide general information on how injury claims work. There are a few factors to consider to know if you have a case.
It’s best to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. A lawyer can examine the details of your accident. Then, based on your situation, they can let you know if you have a case. Contact John Foy & Associates to discuss your case during a free, no-risk consultation. Call or contact us online today.
Hiring a Lawyer Is Essential
If you want to know for sure whether or not you have a valid claim for your personal injury, you need to talk to a lawyer. Only a lawyer can tell you for sure if your claim is strong enough and the amount of compensation you can potentially win.
Even though hiring a lawyer isn’t mandatory, you should do so if you don’t have any legal experience. Many insurance companies are difficult to deal with, and trying to negotiate for a settlement without solid legal representation can prove to be an extremely challenging task. So while you focus on your recovery, allow your lawyer to fight hard on your behalf.
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How to Know If You Have a Valid Injury Claim
There are some questions that can help you know if you have a claim. Ask yourself these three questions. If the answer is “yes” to each of them, you probably have a valid claim. If you do have a claim, you can seek financial recovery for your injuries.
Know What Type of Accident You Suffered
A personal injury case must start with a physical injury. You might suffer a personal injury from:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Car crashes
- Workplace accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Dog bites or animal attacks
If an accident like those listed above injured you, you might have a case. Personal injuries can include psychological harm, but it must result from a physical injury. If your accident does not cause physical injuries, you would not have a personal injury claim. If you have property damage but no injuries, that’s a different type of case.
See If Negligence Was Involved
A personal injury claim must involve negligence. Under the Official Code of Georgia Annotated §51-1-2, “ordinary negligence” is the lack of care that a careful person would have under similar situations. You could say negligence is a form of carelessness.
All people must act in a way that doesn’t harm others. If someone fails in that duty, they have been negligent. To have a personal injury claim, someone must have been negligent. The negligent party in an accident is “at fault” and could be:
- A person
- A company or organization
- A government entity
When you file your injury claim, you will need to know who was at fault for your injuries.
Calculate the Damages You Sustained
Finally, you must have damages. Damages are costs or losses resulting from your injury. You cannot have a valid injury case without damages. Your lawyer will need to know all of your damages from your accident. They will calculate your total costs.
If you did not cause your injury, you might be entitled to full compensation for your losses. So, to have a valid injury claim, you’ll need the following:
- A personal injury
- Someone else’s negligence as the cause of your injury
- Damages from your personal injury
Some injury claims are more straightforward. For example, you might be reasonably sure that you have a case. Other times, your options might be confusing or unclear. Either way, it’s good to schedule a consultation with a lawyer.
Common Damages You Can Compensate in Your Claim
Consider all of the ways your injury has affected your life. You might have personal injury damages like:
- Medical bills from the treatment of your injury
- Prescription medications for your treatment
- Lost wages from work time you’ve had to miss
- Property damage, such as vehicle repairs
- Lost earning capacity if your injury prevents you from working as you could before
- Pain and suffering that the injury has caused you
- Scarring or disfigurement from your accident
- Loss of enjoyment of life or things you used to do
Medical costs, lost wages, and property damages are examples of special damages. You will need to provide proof of these costs. Pain and suffering are general damages that you don’t have to prove. Your lawyer will know how to calculate these damages most accurately.
You Can File a Claim Even If Your Injuries Are Minor
If you have a minor injury but meet the above criteria, you might have a case. If you don’t have injuries, or you only have property damage, you won’t have an injury claim. You’ll also want to consider the strength of your case. If it’s unclear who was at fault, you will have a harder time getting compensation. On the other hand, if you have a lot of damages, pursuing a claim is probably worth it.
Before making any decisions, bring your concerns to a personal injury lawyer. They can look at your case and discuss your options. That way, you’ll understand what type of settlement you might expect.
File Your Claim Before the Deadline
OCGA §9-3-33 gives you just two years to file your claim. Your claim is only valid before the statute of limitations expires. If you wait too long to file, you will forfeit the right to pursue financial compensation. Believe it or not, this happens to lots of people throughout the country. Don’t find yourself in this position.
Always try to act as soon as possible. Get medical treatment and consult with a lawyer so you can both act on the next steps. The amount of compensation you can win is time-sensitive. The longer you wait, the harder it becomes to win a settlement that accurately reflects your damages.
Get a Free Consultation with a Georgia Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries and damages, you might have a claim. To know for sure, contact John Foy & Associates. We’ll go over the details with you during a free consultation. We are one of Georgia’s largest and most respected injury law firms. We’re always on the side of injury victims. We know what it takes to win cases.
When you work with us, there is no fee unless we win. You don’t have to worry about upfront or out-of-pocket costs. To schedule your appointment today at no risk or obligation to you, call us or contact us online.