Personal Injury FAQ
If you have been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else's
negligence, you may be able to file an injury claim with the insurance
company or a lawsuit against the person or company responsible. This means
that you may be able to receive compensation for the damage you received. Often a
personal injury will lead to high medical bills and lost work. This can place a major
strain on a family's financial resources. If you have found yourself
in this position, you may have a number of questions that you want answered.
Our attorneys have put together of list of frequently asked questions
in hopes of provided you with some clarity. If any of your inquiries go
unanswered, do not hesitate to contact our office and find out more.
Click on the Questions to See the Answers
Why should I hire a personal injury attorney? [+]
Simply put, a talented personal injury attorney will increase the amount
and certainty of the monetary compensation you receive for your injuries.
While insurance companies will probably cover some of the costs associated
with treating the injuries you sustained, their coverage usually does
not extend beyond the initial costs. Some injuries can leave you with
a lifetime of pain and discomfort. You should be compensated for these
hardships. With the help of a dedicated attorney, you can seek retribution
for all the hardships you will now have to endure as a result of your
injuries. Do not sit back and let the insurance companies dictate the
terms of your future life, they will always come up short.
What is the difference between a claim and a lawsuit? [+]
Typically, a claim is filed with an insurance company in an attempt to
obtain a reasonable settlement for the injuries and losses sustained by
victim because of another person's or company's negligence. A lawsuit
is a legal action filed before the court that seeks compensation from
the individual, corporation, government agency, or insurance company that
caused the victim's injuries and damages. Discuss your case with a knowledgeable
attorney to determine the best option for your situation.
Is Personal Injury Negligence? [+]
Yes, negligence is one of the most important aspects of a personal injury
case. In fact, it is what an entire claim is based on. Negligence is what
causes the accident you were injured in in the first place. It is any
conduct that fails to provide reasonable care to protect an individual
from harm. In the legal field, negligence has four aspects. First, the
individual accused of negligence must have owed the injured individual
a duty of care. Second, they must have violated that duty. Third, that
breach directly caused the injury. Fourth and finally, that the damage
from the injury is provable. If all four elements are met, an individual
may be accused of negligence.
Should I try to reach a settlement? [+]
When you try to reach a settlement for your personal injury case, you are
essentially making an agreement before going to trial. This is done when
one party, either the defendant or the insurance company, offers a certain
monetary payment in hopes of avoiding going to court. Reaching a settlement
can be beneficial in some situations. However, you must be wary of individuals
and insurance companies that are trying to cheat you out of the full amount
that is due to you. If you are not sure if the settlement that is offered
to you is appropriate, you should hire an attorney. A legal professional
will be able to help you determine whether or not you would receive full
coverage by accepting their offer.
What are the different types of damages that I can recover? [+]
In a personal injury claim, the two most common forms of damages that you
will be able to recover are called compensatory and punitive damages.
Naturally, the type of damages that you can receive will depend entirely
on the situation and the type of accident that you were injured in. Compensatory
or actual damages are, as the name indicates, a payment made to compensate
for the loss or damage that was suffered. If, for example, you were injured in a
car accident and had to pay for a hospital stay and physical therapy as a result, you
can be compensated for those payments.
Punitive damages, on the other hand, are made in response to a criminal
act, such as malicious intent. It is a punishment or deterrence to try
to keep the individual or others from repeating the act. This payment
will be made in addition to the compensatory damages. These types of damages
are much more difficult to determine and can include fraud, malice, bad
faith, recklessness, and wanton violence. This is a controversial topic
in tort law and is often hard to nail down. In most cases, it will be
difficult to receive punitive damages on top of actual damages as the
attitude behind a particular action can be hard to prove. However, if
you intend to seek such recompense, it is best to do so with the aid of
an attorney who has experience with a wide range of personal injury suits.
What happens if my case is not successful? [+]
There is no charge for the firm's time unless your personal injury case
is concluded successfully. We are dedicated to our clients and will do
everything in our power to help ensure you receive a successful verdict.
While ever case has its unique circumstances, our attorneys are confident
that they have the skill and know-how to secure the compensation your
injuries demand. The costs of an exceptional personal injury pale in comparison
to the overwhelming hardships you would have to endure without adequate
compensation. With our firm you stand to lose nothing should our handling
of your case not be successful.
Why should I choose your firm? [+]
Our firm is nationally recognized as one of the best personal injury law
firms in the country. At
Bostwick & Peterson, LLP
, we have over 80 years of combined experience and have won over $500 million
in compensation for our clients. Our firm was awarded the Trail Lawyers
"Presidential Award of Merit" for winning the largest verdict of its type
in the state of California. We also held a number of other state and national
records for verdicts and settlements. Unlike many law firms, we have a
proven record of success. We are proud that we have the ability to help