Woodland Hills Personal Injury
With spectacular views of the Santa Monica Mountains and access to expansive state parks, Woodland Hills is a great escape from the hype and crowds of downtown Los Angeles. You might even catch a glimpse of local celebrities, such as hip hop icon Dr. Dre or actress Justine Bateman. But no neighborhood is completely free from the occasional accident or injury, whether it’s a fender-bender on the 101 or a slip-and-fall injury at your favorite Woodland Hills coffee shop. When someone else is to blame for your injuries, you’ll want to understand your rights and know how to get compensated.
Every situation is a little different (and the law can be quite complicated), so it’s important to get professional assistance from a Woodland Hills personal injury attorney before filing a claim for injuries. The following will help you understand the basics of personal injury liability and claims.What is Personal Injury?
We all know what an injury is, broadly speaking. But in legal terms, an injury is any harm done to an individual as the result of another party’s action or inaction. For instance, if you fail to stop at a red light—resulting in a serious collision with another driver—they may sue you for your negligence that led to their bodily injuries. If you threaten your neighbor with a handgun, causing them extreme fear for their life (an injury to their sense of safety and well-being), they may sue you for assault.
If someone is “liable,” it means they bear some degree of responsibility for your injuries and may be required to compensate you for your injuries. It’s not always easy to determine how much an injury is worth, but that’s where your Woodland Hills personal injury lawyer comes in. They’ll help you figure out the amount of “damages” (specific monetary claims for injuries) based on actual expenses as well as typical amounts for intangible injuries such as emotional distress or pain and suffering.Types of Personal Injury Liability
Liability for personal injuries can stem from negligence, intentional acts, or involve what is called “strict liability.” Civil liability is generally limited to financial compensation, even when a defendant is found liable for someone else’s death (which is called “wrongful death” liability).
- Negligent Personal Injuries: A party that is determined to be negligent owed a duty to another person or entity but breached that duty. The most common type of liability involves traffic accidents. If you drive on public roadways, then you owe a duty to follow all traffic laws, yield to pedestrians, and act in a manner consistent with how a “reasonable person” would act. If you’re intoxicated and cause an injury accident as a result, you have breached that duty and may be found liable (in addition to criminal sanctions).
- Intentional Acts Personal Injuries those injuries that result because someone meant to cause you hard can also give rise to civil liability (and may also be charged as crimes in some instances). For example, someone spills their drink on you at a nightclub. You get angry and beat them up, breaking their nose and causing other injuries. In addition to possible criminal assault and battery charges, the victim may sue you for their injuries. While the criminal court considers your actions an offense against society, the person you injured can claim the cost of their medical bills, time off work, pain and suffering, and other relevant damages.
- Strict Liability Personal Injuries: This class of personal injuries typically pertains to product manufacturers and retailers, doesn’t require the injured party to prove intent or negligence—just proof that they in fact were injured from a given product. For instance, someone who is severely injured because their car’s airbag didn’t work properly may be able to claim damages for their injuries.
Injuries can affect various aspects of daily life, some of them obvious but some of them quite surprising. You may miss work for a while during your recovery; but depending on your line of work, your future earnings could also be impacted. Additionally, you may discover that intimacy with your partner is difficult or even impossible after the injury. While that’s difficult to put a price tag on, it’s certainly a harm that deserves compensation.
Even if your insurance covers your medical bills, your insurer will seek compensation from the responsible party (usually through their liability insurance). Physical therapy, training for a new career, long term reliance on caregivers, and other expenses can really add up as well. It’s not uncommon for injured parties to underestimate their damages because they may not have considered the future long-term implications of their injuries.Don’t Go it Alone: Contact a Woodland Hills Personal Injury Lawyer
No one can turn back time, but experienced injury lawyers understand how the process works and will work to defend your interests. Whether it’s an intentional act, the result of a faulty product, or an injury caused by someone’s negligence, you owe it to yourself to seek the best resolution possible in civil court. The skilled attorneys with the Law Offices of Gary K. Walch, A Law Corporation understand how to get you the compensation you deserve and will fight on your behalf.