Personal Injury Lawyer Seattle WA
Personal Injury Claim – the Basics.
A personal injury lawsuit is what is known as a “tort claim”, which is a civil claim for damages caused by the negligence or wrongful conduct of another person or company. Personal injury claims can arise out of a variety of situations and involve a wide range of issues. Liability can be based on negligence, intentional wrongful conduct, or even strict liability (e.g., product liability claims for dangerous and defective products).
For example, a property owner can be liable to a social guest if that guest is injured due to an unreasonably unsafe condition on the property, which the property owner was aware of. This type of claim is known as a “premises liability” claim, or “slip and fall” claim. Another common example arises out of motor vehicle accidents, such as rear-end collisions that cause injury to the occupants of the car that is hit.
The main objective of a personal injury claim or lawsuit is to determine who is at fault for causing the harm, and to award monetary damages to compensate the injured/harmed party for their losses. In addition to monetary compensation, personal injury lawsuits can often result in changes to policy or procedure by the defendant to help prevent similar injuries to other parties in the future and, in my experience, most of my clients feel a sense of “closure” once their case is resolved, which allows them to move on with their lives and complete the healing process.
Negligence – an Overview.
Most Seattle personal injury claims arise as a result of the negligent conduct of another person or company. Negligence is broadly defined as conduct that falls below the standard of care imposed by law for the protection of others against unreasonable harm. Obviously, this is a flexible standard, and each individual case must be evaluated separately, and various considerations come into play. In order to have a tort claim for negligence, you must establish four basic elements: (1) duty – that the person owed you some duty of care; (2) breach – the person breached or fell below that standard of care; (3) causation – that, as a result of the breached duty, plaintiff incurred harm; and (4) damages – legally recognizable harm/injury/damages were caused by the breached duty. A duty may be imposed by statute, law or regulation, or may be implied by common law. For help in understanding these concepts and in determining whether you have a personal injury claim, contact me to have a Seattle area personal injury attorney review and evaluate your claim for a free initial consultation.Damages Recoverable in a Personal Injury Claim.
Under Washington law, a person who suffers from personal injuries as a result of the negligence or wrongful conduct of another is generally entitled to recover any damages or losses that are caused by the negligent or wrongful conduct. This includes: damages to or loss of property, medical costs, prescription costs, lost income or lost wages, future medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, scarring, loss of future earnings or earning capacity, costs of home health care or assistance, emotional distress and other damages – as long as it can be proven by the requisite evidence that the damages are causally related to the negligent or wrongful conduct. Whether a particular item of damage is “caused” by the negligent or wrongful conduct in a personal injury action, may require proof by an appropriate expert. If you need assistance in pursuing a serious personal injury action in the greater Seattle, WA area contact me for a free initial consultation and case evaluation.
The following is a partial list of types of personal injury cases that I can help you with:
- Car Accidents
- Wrongful Death
- Catastrophic Injuries
- Product Liability
- Dangerously Defective Products
- Fatal Accidents
- Personal Injuries
- Tractor Trailer Trucking Accidents
- Dram Shop Act Liability
- Head Injuries
- Brain Injuries
- Injuries Suffered at Birth
- Spinal Injuries
- Insurance Bad Faith
- Whiplash Cases
- Motorcycle Accidents
- 18-Wheeler Accidents
- Car versus Bicycle Accidents
- Broken or Fractured Bones
- Severe Burns and Scarring
- Injuries Caused by Drunk Drivers
- Insurance Disputes
- Car versus Pedestrian Accidents
- Slip and Fall Injuries
- Premises Liability
- Motor Vehicle Collisions
- Severe Sprains or Strain Injuries
- Insurance/Uninsured Motorist Claims
- Injuries Caused By Unsafe Conditions
- Tort Claims against Federal Government (Federal Tort Claims Act)
- Injuries to Minors or Children