• Questions and Answers About Personal Injury Case Settlements

    legal settlement, personal injury settlement Each personal injury claim filed in Annapolis involves unique issues. Whether or not to accept a settlement offer is entirely the decision of the claimant. Your personal injury lawyer can offer legal guidance and answer your questions about the settlement offer, but he or she cannot make the decision to accept or reject it.

    What is a personal injury settlement?

    Your injury lawyer may try to negotiate for a settlement offer on your behalf. A settlement is an arrangement in which you agree to drop the lawsuit in exchange for accepting a specified sum of money for your losses. A settlement is not an admission of liability on behalf of the defendants. A settlement offer may be extended at any time. Even if your case goes to trial, a settlement may still be possible before the trial concludes.

    Will I receive more money if the case goes to trial?

    Unfortunately, there is no way for a lawyer to determine the outcome of personal injury claims that go to trial. It is certainly possible for you to recover more money if your case results in a jury verdict that is favorable to you. However, there is no guarantee of this. If your case goes to trial, there is also a possibility that you will lose the case and recover no compensation.

    Is the settlement offer reasonable for my case?

    Your personal injury lawyer will draw on his or her years of litigation experience to assess whether the defendants are offering you a fair settlement, given the facts of the case and your damages. Your lawyer will, with your permission, submit a counteroffer to the defendants to try to negotiate for a higher settlement.

    What should the settlement pay?

    A personal injury settlement should compensate you for all of the damages directly related to the incident in question. If you accrued medical expenses and lost wages, the settlement should cover those losses. The same applies to property damage if the case involved a car crash or similar accident. A settlement should also compensate you for your pain and suffering.

    What happens if I do not agree with the settlement?

    You are not required to accept a settlement offer. If you choose not to accept it, your lawyer will litigate your case in court.

    Disclaimer: This article provides general information about the topics discussed and does not qualify as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws applicable to each case may differ. If you have a legal matter, you should speak to an attorney to get advice on your particular situation.

  • Can You Collect Damages for PTSD in a Personal Injury Case?

    personal injury lawyer annapolis, physical injury lawyer annapolis When you discuss your case at a personal injury law firm near Annapolis, one of the issues the attorney may cover is damages. Damages refer to the compensation you may receive for your losses. Typically, a personal injury lawyer can seek compensatory damages for an individual’s calculable or economic losses, which include medical expenses and lost wages as well as for pain and suffering. Depending on the specifics of the case, it may also be possible to recover compensation for psychological damages such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Psychological damages are somewhat more difficult to prove than calculable losses, but it is possible to do so in some cases.

    Underlying Causes

    A plaintiff, who is the individual who files a lawsuit, may be more likely to recover psychological damages if the cause of the personal injury was particularly serious. For example, it may not be easy for a personal injury lawyer to prove that you suffer from PTSD as a result of a minor fender bender. On the other hand, PTSD may be proven more readily if you were the victim of a catastrophic car accident and required the “jaws of life” to be removed from the wreck. To demonstrate to a jury the severity of the incident, your accident lawyer may introduce as evidence photographs of the scene of the incident and testimony from eyewitnesses.

    Related Physical Injuries

    For personal injury claims, plaintiffs are more likely to recover compensation for psychological injuries if they have been diagnosed with physical injuries caused by the incident. This generally speaks to the severity of the individual’s losses. For example, jurors might award a plaintiff compensation for PTSD if the plaintiff lost a limb in the accident or if the plaintiff suffers from other chronic or severe health problems.

    Documented Signs and Symptoms

    It is helpful to document the signs and symptoms of PTSD to substantiate the allegations. Individuals who suffer from PTSD may have recurring thoughts or flashbacks, social withdrawal, anxiety, insomnia, and general disruption in day-to-day life. The plaintiff’s physician or psychologist may be called to testify about these symptoms. Additionally, personal injury lawyers may call an expert witness to the stand to testify about the nature of PTSD .

    Disclaimer: This article provides general information about the topics discussed and does not qualify as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws applicable to each case may differ. If you have a legal matter, you should speak to an attorney to get advice on your particular situation.

  • Comparing Types of Damages in a Personal Injury Case

    lawyer, personal injury, annapolis lawyer If you have been hurt in an accident that was not your fault, your first step should be to contact a reputable personal injury lawyer serving Annapolis. Personal injury law is complex, and an experienced attorney can help fight for your right to compensation. If the court determines that someone else’s negligence caused you harm, you will be awarded financial damages. Keep reading to learn more about different kinds of personal injury damages, like general damages and special damages, and see how each is calculated.

    General Damages

    If your personal injury lawyer has suggested filing a lawsuit to pursue general damages, that means there is a clear link between the defendant’s action and your injury. Even if the defendant could not have foreseen the severity of the harm, your personal injury attorney can still seek full compensation for whatever general damages you suffered. General damages may include physical pain and suffering, disfigurement or impairment, mental anguish, and lowered quality of life.

    Special Damages

    A personal injury claim that involves special damages must prove that the plaintiff suffered a loss with greater specificity. Special damages are all out-of-pocket expenses a plaintiff pays for because of the defendant’s actions. Special damages are designed to compensate a plaintiff for the adverse affects of the defendant’s actions. Common examples include damaged property, lost wages, lost future earning capacity, and past and future medical expenses.

    Different Calculations

    As your personal injury attorney will explain, general damages are more difficult to estimate because the calculation is subjective. For example, general damages like mental anguish are unique to the plaintiff and the situation. However, your lawyer should be able to provide you and the court with an exact estimation of special damages. When special damages are sought for loss of future wages or for future medical care, your attorney will use expert witnesses and other evidence to support the chosen amount.

  • Proving Negligence After a Car Accident

    car accident, negligence, personal injury, law offices Many personal injury claims near Annapolis arise out of driver negligence. When a driver does not practice proper care while operating a motor vehicle—and that failure causes an accident that hurts someone else—it is time for a personal injury lawyer to get involved.

    If you suffer personal injury in a car accident, your attorney will investigate your case to find out if the other driver was negligent. For a successful personal injury claim, you and your personal injury lawyer need to first show that the other driver breached his duty of care. In other words, he failed to act the way a reasonable person would have in a similar circumstance. Next, your personal injury lawyer will need to prove that that failure of care caused your accident. For example, it is often true that when a driver is talking on a cell phone and hits another car, he or she has been negligent.

  • Getting a Fair Settlement for Your Personal Injury

    medical care, personal injury, lawyer annapolis, law office thomas ellis, thomas f ellis law Personal injury claims near Annapolis can be complex, and you need an experienced attorney who will fight for your right to compensation . If you have been hurt, you deserve to be paid damages. Damages can cover your current and future medical bills, loss of income, and emotional pain and suffering. With the right attorney, you can negotiate a high settlement with an insurance company and avoid a prolonged trial. Here is how to get the money you deserve after a personal injury.

    Seek Medical Care

    The first step to getting compensated justly is making sure you immediately seek medical care. When you meet with a doctor, never exaggerate your symptoms, but make sure to tell your physicians about all areas of pain. Your ailments and symptoms must be properly documented for an insurance company to pay for your care. It is also an important part of getting the best medical care possible and beginning your road to recovery.

    Document Your Damages

    Personal injury law firms advise clients to begin conducting an investigation and collecting paperwork before even meeting with an attorney. Make sure to gather and organize all witness statements, police reports, and medical records. You should also take photographs of your injuries and the accident scene. Remember, insurance companies have highly paid investigators working on their side. These documents will be essential to building the best case possible.

    Consult an Attorney

    Most people never think about personal injury law until they are hurt. But personal injury claims are extremely complex, and only an attorney who is well-versed in applicable state law and knows the court system can help you determine your best course of action. An insurance company will push you to settle without talking to a lawyer, but you need someone who will protect your rights throughout the process. A personal injury lawyer will evaluate your claim and review the police and medical reports before giving you an informed estimate of your case’s value.

  • Understanding Negligence

    Negligence is an essential concept in personal injury law in Annapolis . Negligence refers to any conduct by a person or organization that falls below the standards established by law for the protection of others against unreasonable risk of harm.

    In tort law, also known as personal injury, a plaintiff and her attorney are required to prove that the defendant owed a duty to the plaintiff. Next, the personal injury lawyer must show that the defendant breached that duty by failing to conform to the required standard of conduct, and that the negligent conduct caused harm to the plaintiff. This standard in personal injury law helps the court determine whether the defendant should be legally responsible for the victim’s injuries. If a reasonable person would have or should have done something different, there is a good chance the plaintiff will be compensated for her injury.

  • Behind the Scenes of a Personal Injury Case

    If you have recently hired a personal injury lawyer serving Annapolis , you may be interested in learning about how personal injury cases typically progress. While the details of each personal injury lawsuit are different, the basic stages of each personal injury claim are the same from case to case. Here is a look behind the scenes of a typical personal injury claim.

    Initial Meeting with Personal Injury Attorney

    Before filing a personal injury claim, you’ll need to meet with a personal injury lawyer to determine if you have a case. He’ll ask questions about your injuries, the cause of your injuries, your insurance, your medical visits and costs, whether there were witnesses to your injury, and whether the injury occurred on the job. If you and he decide to file a personal injury claim on your behalf, he’ll have you sign a contract or agreement for representation. This agreement will include a provision for payment to your attorney, commonly referred to as a contingent fee, which is usually a percentage of what money you recover in the case, so that your attorney only gets paid if you do.

    Pre-Trial and Settlement Stages

    Personal injury claims are either dismissed or settled before trial, or they proceed to trial. During the pre-trial stages, your personal injury lawyer will attempt to secure a lucrative settlement for you from the opposing party. He’ll also conduct research, and hire expert witnesses to testify on your behalf. It’s crucial that you cooperate fully with your personal injury attorney during this period. If your personal injury claim is settled, you will not need to testify at a trial. If it’s dismissed before trial, your personal injury attorney may be able to re-file your case.

    Trial, Judgment, and Appeals Stages

    Each personal injury trial is different, and it’s impossible to know how long the trial will last, or how complicated it will be. A jury will determine whether your personal injury claim has merit. If a jury rules in your favor, the jury or judge will decide on an amount for an award of judgment. This amount may include reimbursement for financial, physical, and psychological damages, any permanent disability or injury, and pain and suffering. Your personal injury attorney will then have to collect money on the judgment from the opposing party, or more likely from their insurance carrier. The losing party can also appeal the judge’s decision.

    Disclaimer: This article provides general information about the topics discussed and does not qualify as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws applicable to each case may differ. If you have a legal matter, you should speak to an attorney to get advice on your particular situation.