Attleboro, MA Personal Injury Lawyer
Other people should not be allowed to hurt you and walk away without consequences. Even if the harm was not part of a criminal offense, you may still seek justice from the courts. An attorney can help you file a personal injury claim.
Personal injuries consist of bodily harm, often caused by another person’s negligent behavior. To begin your case, speak to an attorney about preparing and filing a formal complaint. The complaint is the legal document that initiates your lawsuit. Your damages should be accounted for and may include monetary losses and non-economic injuries, like pain or suffering. Evidence to support your claims should be gathered as soon as possible from the accident scene or anywhere else that might yield important information. You can follow your case to a full trial, reach a settlement, or pursue an insurance claim to get compensation. You should hire a lawyer to help you navigate this incredibly complex and often lengthy process.
If you were hurt because someone else caused an accident, contact our personal injury lawyers in Attleboro, MA by calling the Law Office of John J. Sheehan at (617) 925-6407 and schedule a free case review to start.
When You Might Need a Personal Injury Lawyer in Attleboro, MA
The field of personal injury law is broad and covers numerous accidents and injuries. Many injured victims are unsure when their cases will meet the criteria for a personal injury claim. In short, a personal injury claim must involve some kind of bodily harm. Other damages, monetary or emotional, should be involved too.
Many personal injuries stem from unintentional conduct by others. Various accidents may lead to a personal injury claim. Commonly cited accidents in personal injury claims include auto accidents, bike crashes, construction accidents, and premises liability injuries. Many potential plaintiffs are uncertain whether they can sue if the other person meant no harm. This is why you should have a lawyer. Your attorney can help you determine if you can sue and, if you cannot, what your other options might be.
Often, injured victims can sue negligent defendants even when the defendant did not intend to cause harm. A lack of intent or ill will does not absolve wrongdoers of responsibility. For example, perhaps another driver hit you while you were walking down the sidewalk. They might not have meant to and were distracted by their phone when they veered off the road. Even so, they should be held accountable for their negligence and made to pay you fair compensation.
Options for Compensation in Attleboro, MA Personal Injury Cases
Injured victims often have a few different options for obtaining fair compensation from those who hurt them. The best method for your case depends on how you were injured, the severity of your injuries and damages, and what you want out of the legal proceedings. Our personal injury lawyers in Attleboro, MA can advise you on your legal options and help determine the best course of action.
Perhaps the most well-known option is to file a lawsuit and have a civil trial. Remember, civil lawsuits do not always involve criminal acts of harm, and the defendant does not have to be charged with a crime concerning your injuries to be held liable in civil court.
Filing a lawsuit has advantages and disadvantages you should discuss with your lawyer. Some advantages include the value of a possible jury verdict. Often, juries will award damages that cover economic losses from things like medical bills and property damage in addition to non-economic damages like pain and suffering. Non-economic damages are often not covered by other compensation options, such as insurance.
A significant disadvantage to a trial is the time and effort required to successfully navigate your case through the judicial system. Lawsuits are famously time-consuming. If you have a particularly complex or contentious case, it might take more than a year to complete. The laws and procedures surrounding lawsuits are also very complicated, and you need a lawyer to help you through it all.
A lawsuit may be worth the wait if you are willing to put in the time and effort. This can be an especially good option for those with very high damages that insurance cannot completely cover. It is also a good option for people who need a verdict to get justice, find closure, and move on emotionally and mentally.
Settlements and lawsuits tend to go hand-in-hand, although they are technically not the same. A settlement is not an outcome of a lawsuit. Instead, a settlement is another legal option that might cut a lawsuit short, saving both parties time and effort. Many civil lawsuits, including personal injury claims, end in settlement agreements.
A settlement is a private agreement between the plaintiff and the defendant. It is not determined by the court. Generally, the defendant agrees to pay a certain amount of compensation to the plaintiff, and the plaintiff agrees to waive their right to sue for damages. How much compensation is paid is negotiated and agreed upon by the parties.
If you have strong evidence making a victory in the courtroom more likely, you might be better able to persuade the defendant to agree to a favorable settlement. They might rather pay your damages and move out without incurring costly legal fees or going through a time-consuming trial.
Many people with personal injuries get coverage from insurance policies. You might have health insurance to cover hospital bills and automotive insurance to cover vehicle damage after a car accident. For some, their injuries and damages are easily covered by insurance. In such cases, an attorney can help you file your insurance claims and make sure you get fair compensation from the insurance company. Depending on the situation and insurance policy, you might need evidence of fault.
Unfortunately, the insurance claims process is not always as smooth as we would like. Insurance companies might push back against your claims and demand more evidence of your injuries and accident. They might try to deny your claims altogether. Having an attorney by your side might put some pressure on the insurance company to be more accommodating to avoid a lawsuit.
How to Begin a Personal Injury Case in Attleboro, MA
To start your claims, you should talk to an attorney about the nature of your injuries. When you file a complaint with the courts to start a lawsuit, you must clearly state the nature of your injuries and why you are suing.
General allegations of harm are not going to help. We need to be specific and find a foundation of law and facts to support your claims. For example, were you hurt in a car accident or by a defective product you purchased? Both accidents might lead to personal injury claims, but they must be handled differently.
Next, we must assess your damages and find evidence to support your case. Some plaintiffs are surprised to learn that they need these details figured out so soon. Although awarded at the end of a case, damages must be worked out in advance. You need to know damages before filing the case so the court knows what is at stake. If damages are left out on accident, they might not be considered at all.
While we do not need to have enough evidence at the beginning of your case to prove negligence and liability, we need enough to show that your claims have merit. Without evidence, your complaint might be viewed as a list of baseless allegations and rejected by the court.
Once your complaint is ready, your attorney can help you file it with the correct court and serve proper notice to the defendant. Notice is a major requirement in any lawsuit. If notice is not served to the defendant according to strict court protocols, your entire case might be in jeopardy. Your attorney can help you serve notice.
Possible Damages in Attleboro, MA Personal Injury Cases
Understanding all your damages is crucial to maximizing your compensation. While many damages are based on money, many other damages are not. Damages can be more subjective and open to interpretation without having a definite monetary value.
Your economic damages are the losses and injuries that cost real money. One of the more prominent economic damages in personal injury claims is hospital bills. Even if your injuries were less severe and you were only in the hospital for a day, you might still be hit with huge medical bills. If your insurance covers most of your expenses, you can still claim the value of high deductibles.
You should also try to take stock of any property or personal items you lost in the accident. For example, after a car crash, plaintiffs may claim the value of their damaged vehicle. If you lose personal belongings like a phone, laptop, jewelry, watches, or anything else, it may be added to your overall damages.
In cases where plaintiffs have severe injuries, they often need time to recover. Working might be impossible during this time, and the plaintiff might lose significant income and earnings. The longer you are unable to work, the higher your damages will be. If you do not believe you will be able to return to work for a long time, your lawyer can help you estimate the value of future lost income.
Non-economic injuries are usually not related to money or a financial cost, but they may still be compensated by the court. These kinds of damages are often rooted in the plaintiff’s personal experience with the accident and their injuries. As such, non-economic damages tend to be highly subjective and open to interpretation.
Your physical pain deserves compensation. This category of damages is distinct from medical bills for physical injuries. Your pain might have been excruciating, and medical treatment might also have been very uncomfortable. Even though pain might not really cost money, it deserves compensation.
Emotional or mental suffering and anguish should also be evaluated for compensation. Accidents can be traumatizing, and the mental distress from the accident and your injuries might stay with you for years to come. Many plaintiffs need professional help or counseling to deal with the psychological turmoil. If you suffered mentally or emotionally because of your injuries, discuss it with your lawyer.
Evidence You Need to Support Your Personal Injury Claims in Attleboro, MA
As mentioned above, you need evidence to support your claims. The type of evidence you need varies based on the nature of your injuries and claim. It also varies based on your unique circumstances. Some people have easy access to strong evidence, while others have to scrounge for the slightest bit of helpful information.
First, we need evidence of your injuries and damages. This might be shown through your medical records from when you were treated for your injuries. We can also present records of monetary costs, like vehicle repairs or receipts from replacing lost personal items. Records of payment from your job might be necessary if you want to claim lost income.
Next, we need evidence of how the accident happened. Many people take pictures or record videos of accident scenes while they wait for the authorities to arrive. If you have any of these photos or videos, they might be very important pieces of evidence.
Witnesses may be necessary to help you prove all sorts of important details about your case. Witnesses can testify about what they saw when the accident happened. Witnesses might testify about how much pain you were in after the accident. Talk to your lawyer about any other people who might have been present for the accident or are otherwise connected to the case.
For Help with Your Case, Call Our Personal Injury Lawyers in Attleboro, MA
Reach out to our personal injury attorneys in Attleboro, MA by calling the Law Office of John J. Sheehan at (617) 925-6407 and making an appointment for a free case review to begin.