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An accident may force your life to a standstill. Unfortunately, the world around you will continue to move. Your landlord will expect payment for the rent, your utility companies will expect payment for the electricity and gas, and your hospital will expect money after they treated your injuries, etc. After suffering an injury, many people find themselves stressed about how they are going to pay for their medical bills and keep their lives on track. This is why people seek compensation.
We at Zinda Law Group understand that accidents can lead to mental anguish and our attorneys are here to help. If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident and seek to file a personal injury claim, call Zinda Law Group at (888) 314-6671 for a free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers.
What is Accident Compensation?
This is essentially money awarded to an injured person after they were involved in an accident that was not their fault.
When you receive compensation, you receive money because of the damages to you physically and financially resulting from an injury you sustained that wasn’t your fault.
For instance, if you get involved in a car accident because of the negligence of another person, you may be compensated with money by the negligent person’s insurance company.
The accident and your injuries are significant factors in determining the settlement that you will receive, some common types are
Car accident compensation is what it sounds like. It is awarded to a person as a result of a car accident that was not their fault. A car accident may include a rear-end collision, car on car accident, accident with a truck, bus, bicycle, electric scooter or another road user. While rules about liability and insurance coverage will differ from one insurance company to another and from one state to another, be aware that some states utilize the “fault” system.
In the context of a car accident, this system requires the person who causes the accident to compensate the person who is not at fault.
How much do you get for a car accident?
Award amounts for a car accident can vary significantly due to the number of factors applied in its calculation. You would likely receive less for a minor whiplash injury than you would for a permanent spinal injury. Besides the severity of your injuries, other factors considered would be the cost of your medical expenses, your lost wages, and whether you contributed in any way to the cause of the accident.
The best way to get an idea of how much you could claim is by speaking with a personal injury attorney. With their knowledge and experience, they may have handled a case similar to yours in the past, and have an idea how much your claim could be worth.
Moreover, an experienced attorney may be able to seek higher settlement than you would be able to seek alone. Insurance companies are known to offer a little less than what your case is worth as they want to settle quickly. An inexperienced person may see their offer as very good and settle without taking into account damages, future medical expenses, future lost earnings, and other non-economic damages.
Premises liability compensation means a settlement for injuries received on another person’s property. For instance, if you go to a store that had recently washed its floors and failed to place caution signs, you may have a claim if you end up slipping and injuring yourself.
It is important to note that a premises liability claim depends on what kind of relationship the visitor has with the property. When you visit a property, you can be an invitee, licensee, or a trespasser. Unlike a trespasser, an invitee and a licensee are on a property with the permission of the property owner. However, an invitee is on the property for the benefit of the property owner while a licensee is on the property for solely his or her own benefit. A property owner is generally required to give the most amount of protection to an invitee.
Workers’ compensation is a state-based insurance program that pays for medical bills and lost wages of employees who have been injured at work by negligence, defective machinery, or other causes. Whether it is on a construction site or any other workplace, injuries may be covered by this insurance. Worker's compensation also covers those who suffer from illness related to their work. The caveat of this is that you cannot sue your employer directly if you are eligible for workers’ compensation.
However, in some states, some employees are not covered and in such cases, an injured worker may be entitled to sue their employer if injured in an accident.
Truck accident compensation awards a person for injuries from accidents involving commercial trucks. Often, these accidents arise due to driver fatigue. Truckers drive for extremely long periods, thus being susceptible to drowsiness at the wheel. However, accidents can also occur due to drivers being under the influence of drugs or alcohol or simply because of reckless driving. In each of these cases, you may be entitled to make a claim if you are injured. These injuries must be directly related to the truck accident.
Wrongful death is a death caused by another person’s wrongful act or neglect. A wrongful death lawsuit is available if the deceased person could have filed a personal injury claim if they had of survived the accident. However, because the deceased person cannot file a lawsuit, another person must file in his or her place.
State laws about wrongful death will vary, so too will laws regarding who can make a claim. It is advisable to speak with a wrongful death lawyer to understand your position better.
Making a Claim
The procedure for filing a claim may differ depending on your accident and injuries. However, below is a general outline of the steps involved:
1. Medical Attention
If you have been involved in an accident, it is imperative that you first seek medical attention. Your health is the number one priority. From a claims perspective, medical records will be required to prove your injuries. Furthermore, if you do not seek medical attention immediately, an insurance company may question the severity of your injuries.
You will need evidence. Therefore, if applicable, call the police as they may write up a report that can later be used as evidence in your case. Other aspects that you should document are:
- Photographs - If able, you should also take photographs of the scene of the accident and your injuries
- Witness details – take note of any witnesses’ contact details
- Medical expenses – keep a record of any medical expenses related to your injury
- Other expenses – keep a record of additional costs such as household expenses, taxi fares, car rental, etc. that arise because of your accident and injuries.
- Other driver's details – if you were in a car accident you should record the other driver’s contact and insurance details.
3. Notify Your Insurance Company
In car accident cases, even if you were not at fault, you should probably call your insurance company. Your insurance company may have a policy that requires you to notify any accidents you were involved in.
4. Call a Personal Injury Attorney
Though we may live in a society where information is at your fingertips, it is nevertheless wise to seek professional assistance. The right attorney can seek to maximize your settlement and also help you avoid the pitfalls that you could fall into if you have never moved through the claims process before. They will negotiate with insurance companies to seek settlement for your case.
How Are Settlements Calculated?
Compensation is a calculation of losses you incurred after an accident that was not your fault. These losses may be financial or non-financial and are more widely known as economic losses and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are financial losses and include:
- property damage
- medical bills, including future medical bills to treat your injury and for rehabilitation
- lost wages, including future loss of earnings from being out of work due to injury
To calculate your economic losses, you will need to provide evidence. This includes pay stubs, receipts, repair estimates, and medical bills.
Non-economic losses are non-financial losses and include:
- pain and suffering
- mental anguish
- physical impairment
- loss of consortium
What is Loss of Consortium?
This refers to the deprivation of a family relationship because of injuries caused by the person at fault for the accident. Loss of consortium may also include deprivation of spousal relationship in cases where the injured spouse can no longer engage in affectionate or sexual relations with their spouse.
Because non-economic and loss of consortium are more subjective than economic damages, they are more difficult to calculate.
Punitive damages may be awarded in addition to other damages in certain circumstances. Punitive damages are intended to punish the person at fault for the accident if their actions were grossly negligent and intended to injure you.
How Long Do I Have To File A Claim?
The length of time you have to file your claim will depend on the type of accident you had and the state you live in, amongst other factors.
Legal time limits refer to how long a person has to file their injury claim. This time limit is known as the statute of limitations. The following is intended only as a general guideline as the statute of limitations will differ depending on the state where you are bringing your claim and also depending on the accident.
In general, many states enforce a two-year time limit on personal injury claims. This means that a person has two years after the date of their accident to make a claim. If a person tries to file a claim after two years, they may lose the opportunity ever to seek compensation.
Time limits for adults and children (minors) differ. A minor is generally considered to be a person under the age of 18. A minor cannot bring a claim forward themselves until they turn 18. Meaning that in many cases the clock on their two-year time limit doesn’t start until they turn 18.
However, in many cases, a parent or legal guardian may be able to move forward with a claim on their behalf. In child injury cases, if the case is successful, the settlement is generally not released until the child turns 18.
As regulations vary depending on your accident and state, it is important to speak with a personal injury lawyer to understand more about legal time limits relative to your accident and state.
Tell Zinda Law Group About Your Case
For more information on how compensation claims work, or to get started seeking a settlement for an injury, contact Zinda Law Group at (888) 314-6671 for a 100% free and confidential discussion with a personal injury lawyer. Our no win no fee lawyers charge you nothing if they don’t win your case, that’s our No Fee Guarantee.
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