After a person sustains injuries because of negligence, they often wonder where to begin in the process of collecting compensation for the losses they suffered. They may also wonder how much their injuries are worth and how to file a claim.
Whether you seek compensation for yourself or a loved one, a Tacoma personal injury lawyer could help you navigate this complex process. If you sustained avoidable injuries and losses because of the negligence of someone else, contact a qualified lawyer right away to schedule a consultation.
Proving Liability in Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury is the most significant corner of civil law. Some of the most common personal injury cases that lawyers tend to see include:
A personal injury lawyer in Tacoma could answer questions on potential damage recovery and establishing liability. To prove liability in personal injury cases, a lawyer will need to establish to the court that the defendant was negligent in some way. There are four elements needed to prove liability.
A Duty of Care Existed
The duty of care is a person’s legal obligation to act reasonably in a particular situation and ensure they do not cause harm to those around them. An example is that all drivers must operate their vehicle safely so that they do not injure other drivers or pedestrians.
The Negligent Party Breached Duty of Care
After establishing a duty of care, the lawyer must show that the negligent party breached that duty. They can prove this by exhibiting that the defendant failed to exercise reasonable care with their actions.
The Plaintiff’s Injuries Occurred Because of The Breach
To prove this portion of a negligence claim, a Tacoma attorney will need to show the court that the plaintiff’s injuries directly resulted from the defendant’s breach of duty of care.
The Injuries Resulted in Damages
To establish damages, there must be evidence of the plaintiff’s injuries causing compensable economic and/or non-economic losses. They can prove this with proof of missing work, hospital bills, and other receipts that exist only because of the accident.
Recovering Compensation for Damages
If a settlement cannot be reached, then a court of law will base the award for damages on the extent of the injuries. The judge will decide on an amount after considering the plaintiff’s total current and future financial losses. They may award compensatory damages for the total costs that the injured party incurred, with the goal of bringing their finances back to the point it was before the accident.
Damages would include any out-of-pocket expenses related to the injury, as well as for certain non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering. A Tacoma personal injury attorney could help someone collect the evidence to verify losses and calculate the total amount of damages.
State Statute of Limitations
There is a time limit a person must pay close attention to when filing a personal injury case in Washington, known as the statute of limitations. Per the Revised Code of Washington § 4.16.080, the plaintiff must file their claim within three years from the day they sustained the injuries.
If the claimant misses the deadline, the defendant will have cause to ask that the court immediately dismiss any lawsuit that occurs thereafter.
Schedule to Meet With a Tacoma Personal Injury Attorney
Regardless of the type of personal injury claim you are seeking, a skilled legal professional could help you build your case to collect compensation. These cases require skillful review, investigation, and litigation.
A Tacoma personal injury lawyer has the experience to advocate on your behalf and fight for the total amount of compensation that you deserve for the losses you suffered. You should not have to pay for somebody else’s wrongdoing. Call and schedule a consultation with Ritchie Reiersen Law as soon as possible.