Personal injury is the broad term used to describe situations where an individual is hurt by another person's carelessness.
A personal injury case can include a variety of situations including traffic collision injuries, slip and fall injuries, injuries suffered because of a medical mistake by a doctor or a legal mistake by a lawyer. It can also include injuries that occur because of a defective product or in the course of work such as on a construction site. In order to make a case, the injured person must be able to show that the harm and losses were caused by someone else's carelessness. Personal injury claims typically involve physical injuries that are often accompanied to some degree with emotional upset.
Personal injury claims can also include cases involving intentional acts such as the deliberate conduct involved when an adult sexually abuses a child or physically assaults another person.
Please see specific types of personal injury described in our legal services section. If you are injured by another, please do not hesitate to contact our personal injury attorneys. Our very experienced attorneys will assist you in any manner during this difficult time.
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Common Questions About Personal Injury
- How do I know if I have a personal injury case?
If you are injured because of the fault or wrongful conduct of another person or entity, you may have the right to bring a lawsuit to recover money damages for your losses. Some examples of the types of incidents that give rise to personal injury claims include: car accidents; motorcycle accidents; falls; sexual abuse; workplace injuries; defective products; medical malpractice; legal malpractice; and nursing home negligence. You should consult with a lawyer as soon as possible after your injury to determine whether or not you have a case.
- How long do I have to file a personal injury claim or case?
Under the law, you generally have two years from the date of the injury to file a personal injury lawsuit that is based upon the negligent conduct of another person or entity. The time limitation for filing a lawsuit varies, however, depending upon the nature of the claim. With certain types of claims there are also notice requirements that must be met before you file suit. It is therefore always wise to consult with a lawyer as soon as possible after your injury to make certain that your case is not time-barred.
- How long will my personal injury case take?
How long a personal injury case takes depends upon a number of factors, including how long you are required to be treated for your injuries, whether the responsible party contests how the accident happened or whether it caused your injuries, and whether the responsible party and his insurance carrier fairly evaluate your case. Typically, if a case does not settle, it takes about two years from the time that a case is filed in court to be reached for trial.
- How much of my time will be required?
Unless your case goes to trial, the actual amount of time that will require your personal involvement in a personal injury case is relatively minimal. The initial office conference to discuss your claim usually takes about one hour. Follow-up conferences to check on your medical progress and to update you on your case generally take less time and can be done in the office or by phone. If a lawsuit is filed, you would likely need to come into the office to review and sign certain papers required under our court rules. You may also be required to answer questions under oath at a deposition, undergo a medical examination by a doctor selected by the other party, and attend a pretrial conference at court.
- What damages am I entitled to claim in a personal injury case?
In Connecticut you are entitled to claim two types of damages – economic and non-economic. Economic damages are intended to compensate you for past and future out-of-pocket losses. These damages may include compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and loss of earning capacity. Non-economic damages are intended to compensate you for the past and future effects of the injuries on your life. These damages may include payment for your pain and suffering, permanent disability, and loss of enjoyment of your normal activities of daily living.
- What is the difference between criminal and civil cases? Is there a different burden of proof?