Blog How do I Know if I Have a Personal Injury Case?

How do I Know if I Have a Personal Injury Case?

A personal injury is one of the most devastating things that can happen to a person because, at best, it can inconvenience their life, and at worst, it can change their life forever.

Fortunately, when someone suffers a personal injury, no matter how big or small it may be, they are entitled to receive compensation to cover all of the expenses caused by the accident.

However, to receive that compensation, the victim has to know that they suffered a personal injury in the first place. This may seem like a strange statement to make, but there can be situations where a victim doesn’t realize they have a valid personal injury case.

The reason is that they may not be familiar with the elements that constitute a personal injury case and may not realize that they are owed compensation and do not have to suffer in silence or pay for their expenses.

A Bronx personal injury attorney advises accident victims to contact a personal injury lawyer after their accident to learn if they have a valid case. Since most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations, the accident victim has nothing to lose by talking to one.

Personal injury lawyers also tend to work on a contingency basis, so the accident victim only has to pay them if the case is successful. So, if you have recently been in an accident, contact a personal injury lawyer to find out if you have a personal injury case.


The Elements of a Personal Injury Case

The Elements of a Personal Injury Case

For a personal injury case to be considered valid, it needs to have the following elements present:

  1. The accident victim was owed a duty of care. A duty of care means that a person has to behave in the way a reasonable person would under similar circumstances. For example, a driver owes a duty of care to other people on the road by driving safely and paying attention to the road. A doctor owes a duty of care to their patients to provide the best possible healthcare. Basically, everyone owes a duty of care to everyone else.
  2. The duty of care was breached. This is also called negligence, and an example is if a store owner failed to clean up a spill that could cause visitors to slip, fall, and hurt themselves.
  3. The breach of duty caused an accident. The breach of duty is bad, but it only becomes a problem if it causes an accident. So, in the previous example, the spilled liquid only becomes a problem if a customer slips and falls in it.
  4. The accident led to losses for the victim. In this case, losses—aka damages—means that the accident victim was hurt or suffered property damage because of the accident. To continue the slip and fall example, the victim would suffer damages if they fell and broke their wrist. If a person is unhurt after the accident, then they don’t have a valid personal injury case.


A personal injury case needs to have all of those elements for the victim to have a legitimate personal injury case. There is one situation that doesn’t necessarily need all those requirements: an assault or battery.

In most cases, personal injuries are accidents, but assault and battery are intentional acts. Even though the perpetrator may end up in a criminal case, the accident victim can still file a personal injury claim against them.

The reason is that the criminal case is to punish the perpetrator while the personal injury claim is to provide compensation to the victim.

Related guide: Personal Injury Case Timeline

Common Personal Injury Cases

Common Personal Injury Cases

Since the elements of a personal injury case are so broad, there are many different scenarios that you can consider for personal injuries. The following are some of the most common types.

a. Car Accidents –

These happen all over the country multiple times a day. Car accidents vary in severity from minor fender-benders to fatal crashes. A high percentage of personal injury cases involve car accidents.

b. Premises Liability –

This is when a person gets injuries because of a dangerous condition on someone else’s property. The property can be commercial or residential, but the person must have been on the property legally when they got the injury.

c. Medical Malpractice –

This is when a doctor or any other healthcare provider ends up injuring a patient they were to take care of. Medical malpractice includes surgical errors, misdiagnosis, poor aftercare, wrong prescription, and more.

Motorcycle Accidents – These are unfortunately common because motorcycles are much smaller than four-wheeled vehicles and offer less protection. That means sometimes drivers fail to notice them, and if a motorcycle does crash, the rider is more likely to sustain severe injuries.

d. Dog Bites –

Dogs can be man’s best friend except when they attack someone unprovoked. When that happens, the dog’s owner is liable for any injuries to the victim.

e. Product Liability –

If a product despite appropriate use malfunctions, it can hurt the user. Consequently, that is product liability. These cases can complicate because the liability could lie with the manufacturer, the distributor, or the retailer.

f. Wrongful Death –

This is when what would be classified as a personal injury ends up killing the victim. When that happens, the surviving family members can file a wrongful death suit against the at-fault party.

These are some of the more common types of personal injury cases, but there are many others, such as truck accidents, pedestrian accidents, and bicycle accidents. The common denominator in all personal injury cases is that someone negligence was the cause of harm.

What To Do After a Personal Injury

What To Do After a Personal Injury

All personal injury victims can get compensation from the insurance company of the party that caused the accident. But to increase their chances of compensation, there are a few things they should do.

They should take pictures or video of the accident scene and their injuries. They should see a doctor because there could be injuries that don’t immediately manifest.

And, most importantly, they should contact a personal injury attorney to work on their case. An attorney will give personal injury victims the best possible chance of receiving the compensation they deserve.

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