Every year, countless Missourians find themselves involved in unfortunate incidents leading to injuries. From auto accidents to slip and falls, the impact on one’s life can be significant in all of these cases. Traumatic brain injuries, in particular, can have lasting consequences, while even a broken bone can interfere with work and life for months.
Furthermore, while immediate medical expenses are always obvious loses, intangible effects on future earning potential, pain and suffering, and future medical costs may remain uncertain. You have the right to seek compensation for both present and potential future medical bills, and at Holman Schiavone, LLC, we can help. Read on to learn more about the most common injury claims our personal injury lawyers typically see and have extensive experience dealing with.
The Most Common Types of Personal Injury Claims
Motor vehicle accidents, including car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle accidents, are some of the most frequently reported personal injury cases in Missouri. With the rise in traffic and the occasional negligence of drivers, auto accidents can lead to a wide array of injuries.
From neck injuries to broken bones, the aftermath of a car accident can be debilitating. A severe injury might even require lifelong medical treatment, emphasizing the importance of considering future medical expenses in these personal injury lawsuits.
Every day, hardworking Missourians face the risk of workplace accidents. These can range from construction accidents, exposure to harmful substances like asbestos, and even simple slip and fall accidents within office premises.
An injured worker might suffer from burn injuries, spinal cord injuries, or even catastrophic injuries that disrupt their normal life. Such incidents not only lead to immediate medical bills, but might also result in thousands of dollars worth of long-term therapy or rehabilitation costs.
Premises liability comes into play when a person is injured due to dangerous conditions at a location away from their home, such as at a business, another person’s home, or even out on the street. From wet floors to uneven sidewalks, these accidents can result in injuries like back injuries or even brain injuries. Property owners have a duty to ensure safe conditions, and failure to do so can render them liable.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
A traumatic brain injury can result from various accidents, but it is especially common after car accidents and workplace accidents. The consequences of such an injury can impact a person’s ability to work, enjoy leisure activities, or even perform daily tasks. Long-term care, ongoing therapy, and unforeseen future medical complications can become realities for victims.
Losing a family member due to the negligence of others is devastating. In such personal injury cases, the family might seek compensation not only for the immediate loss, but also for the potential financial and emotional support they’ve lost. This includes the deceased’s potential future earnings, support, and companionship.
When consumers purchase products, they trust these items to be safe. Defective products can lead to severe burns, injuries, or even wrongful death, and the law provides a remedy for this breach of trust. Manufacturers and sellers have a responsibility to ensure the safety of their products. If they fail in this duty, they can be held liable.
Other Types of Personal Injury Cases
Missouri residents should also be aware of other types of personal injury cases that may not immediately come to mind, but which can have equally devastating consequences. Dog bites and other animal attacks can lead to severe injuries, infections, permanent scarring, or even psychological trauma. Animal owners have a responsibility to manage and control their pets, and failure to do so can result in liability for any injuries caused by their animal.
Missouri’s lakes and rivers see their fair share of recreational boating, and negligence or recklessness while operating a boat can lead to severe injuries, or in the worst scenarios, wrongful death. The aftermath of such incidents may require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation.
While often overlooked, food poisoning can also result in serious illness, requiring hospitalization and long-term medical care. Whether from a restaurant or a store-bought product, if negligence is found, injured parties can seek compensation.
Finally, in bustling urban areas like Kansas City in particular, pedestrian accidents are not uncommon. Injuries from such accidents can be devastating due to the vulnerability of unprotected pedestrians compared to the size and speed of a moving vehicle: even one as small as a bike.
Common Types of Damages
When filing personal injury claims in Missouri, there are various compensations one can seek. These typically include tangible expenses like medical bills, both present and future, ensuring that victims are not burdened with medical costs resulting from someone else’s negligence. Lost wages are something else you can be compensated for. This covers both immediate loss of earnings and potential future earnings if the injury interferes with the victim’s ability to work.
Less tangible losses are mental anguish, or pain and suffering, and you can seek compensation for the emotional and psychological distress that comes with injuries. And in certain circumstances, punitive damages can even be awarded. Punitive damages are awarded to punish the negligent party and deter similar behaviors in the future.
Call a Personal Injury Lawyer for Help With Your Case
The legal intricacies surrounding personal injury cases in Missouri are very complex. From understanding your rights to calculating potential future damages, having the right legal representation is paramount.
Personal injury lawyers bring a wealth of knowledge to the table. They can guide you through the process, from filing the initial claim to negotiating with insurance companies and even representing you in court if necessary. They understand the various aspects of personal injury law, ensuring that all potential damages, including future medical expenses, are considered.
Personal injury attorneys also have the resources to consult with medical professionals, accident reconstruction specialists, and other experts that can strengthen your case. By having such a dedicated team on your side, you can focus on your recovery while they handle the legal aspects.
The Process of Personal Injury Lawsuits
Understanding the legal process can make the journey just a bit less overwhelming. Personal injury claims can take time to properly adjudicate, but personal injury lawyers have the experience you need to get the compensation you truly deserve after a personal injury.
Most personal injury claims go through the following process:
- Initial Consultation: Once an injured individual believes they have a personal injury case, they typically consult personal injury lawyers. During this consultation, the lawyer assesses the viability of the personal injury claim, informs the potential client of their rights, and suggests the best way forward, which may or may not be a personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death claim.
- Investigation: If the attorney agrees to take the case, they will start an in-depth investigation as a foundation to the personal injury lawsuit. This might involve collecting evidence, taking photos, interviewing witnesses, obtaining medical records, consulting experts, and gathering other relevant information that can bolster the personal injury claim. Expert lawyers will use this information in early negotiations with insurance companies. The hope is to get the insurance company to quickly make an offer that will truly cover the damages of personal injury claims after motor vehicle accidents or other types of accidents.
- Filing of an Official Complaint: If negotiations with the insurance company or other party fail, or if it’s strategically more advantageous to bypass them, the attorney will file a formal complaint in court. This document will outline the type or types of personal injury involved.
- Discovery Phase: After the complaint is filed, both sides enter the discovery phase. This is a period where both the plaintiff and defendant can request documents, ask questions, and gather more information from the opposing side. Depositions, which are formal, recorded interviews conducted under oath, might also take place during this phase.
- Mediation and Negotiation: Before the case goes to trial, both parties often participate in mediation. This involves a neutral third-party mediator who attempts to facilitate a settlement between the two sides. If both parties can come to an agreement on the proper compensation after serious injuries or other types of personal injury, the case will be resolved without a trial.
- Trial: If a settlement can’t be reached during mediation, the case will proceed to trial. Here, both sides present their arguments, evidence, and witness testimonies before a judge or jury. Once all the information is presented, the judge or jury will make a verdict.
- Potential Appeals: After a verdict is given, the losing side might decide to appeal the decision. This means they believe there was a legal error made during the trial. The appeals process is not uncommon with these types of personal injury cases and can, unfortunately, add more time to the resolution of the case.
- Collection: If the injured party wins the lawsuit and is awarded compensation, the next step involves collecting that award. Sometimes, the losing party might not willingly pay, requiring additional legal procedures.
- Distribution of Compensation: Once the awarded funds are collected, the attorney will subtract their legal fees and then distribute the remaining amount to the injured party. If the personal injury claims were for damage to the spinal cord or other very serious and costly personal injuries common after motor vehicle accidents and workplace accidents especially, it is possible the hospital or other parties may have put a lien on any compensation. This will also be taken out before the funds are distributed to the injured party.
It’s worth noting that many personal injury cases never go to trial. They are often settled out of court during the negotiation or mediation phase. This is often less costly and can be quicker than going through a full trial. However, it’s essential to have a competent personal injury attorney to help you at each stage to get the best possible outcome and the maximum compensation.
Get Help With Your Personal Injury Case
At Holman Schiavone, LLC, we are committed to fighting for your rights. Our focus is to ensure that you receive the comprehensive compensation you deserve to aid in your recovery and secure your future. If you or a loved one experiences an injury, whether that injury occurs at work, in a car accident, or elsewhere, due to someone else’s negligence, we encourage you to reach out for a free consultation.
Your well-being, peace of mind, and financial security are our top priority. Don’t face the aftermath of a serious injury alone; contact an experienced personal injury attorney now to get an expert in personal injury law on your side. Call us at 816-399-5149 right away to discuss your personal injury lawsuit.