The term “personal injury” refers to a division of tort law. According to this law, any wrong or harm done to another individual, his body, his psychological beliefs, his property, rights or reputation, constitutes as personal injury. Such injuries can occur at one’s workplace, in a traffic accident, due to a medical carelessness or mistake, faulty products and repairs, or because a person may have slipped and fallen on a wet floor. Personal injuries can also be caused by attacks by domestic animals, emotional trauma and domestic abuse cases. However, in order for the law to intervene, personal injuries must prove to be the work of another individual.
Such individuals may be the cause a person’s personal injury due to their negligence, their unreasonable behavior, their unsafe actions etc. People who cause harm to others might include employers, manufacturers, doctors, landlords, an organization or a person who is responsible for individuals.
There are several examples of personal injuries. Some of these include:
- Vehicle related accidents
- Domestic animal bite and attacks
- Spinal, head and brain injuries
- Motorcycle and bicycle accidents
- Class actions
- Natural disasters
- Train and railroad accidents
- Sexual assault and abuse
- Slip and fall accidents
- Trucking and semi trucking accidents
- Wrongful births and deaths
- Slander and defamation
- Trespassing property
It is important to find out who makes personal injury laws. Personal injury laws are governed by common law. Common laws are made by judges, in contrast to the laws made by the legislatures or passed in different bills. After a judge hears the case, his decision on that particular issue of the law becomes the compulsory standard in all the courts in the state that come under his judgment. Hence, all the other courts have to agree to what the first judge has said and this becomes the “common law”. However, common law differs from state to state and the rules that apply to one state may not be parallel to those in another.
- When is it the right time to hire a personal injury lawyer?
For a common individual, it is a daunting and complex task to determine if he indeed needs to hire a personal injury lawyer. In cases which are difficult to quantify and negotiation with the party causing the damage is difficult, the experience and skill of a personal injury attorney is worth the risk. In such cases, the lawyer’s experience and reputation act as a shield for the injured person against insurance companies or individuals causing harm. This is because in most cases, victims do not realize the compensation they deserve, the injuries are too severe, the laws governing the claim are too complicated and complex to understand, or simply because the insurance company has refused to pay compensation or resolve matters informally.
An individual must consider hiring a personal injury lawyer in the following circumstances:
- When the injuries have caused permanent or long term disabilities
- When there are more than one major injury sustained by the victim
- When there is medical misconduct and malpractice involved. This may be unintentional and at the hands of the doctor, the nurse, the hospital staff, the hospital, laboratory, clinic or the pharmacy.
- Exposure to toxic materials
- Refusal of claims by insurance companies
However, if an individual is still not sure whether to hire a personal injury lawyer, he or she must consider the following benefits of hiring a lawyer:
- Experienced lawyers are aware of how to calculate claims and the actual worth of injuries and accidents
- Lawyers are well versed with the legal processes
- Lawyers fight for compensation and reduce the risk of their clients getting refusals for claimed compensations
- They are enthusiastic to help the injured party
- Lawyers take injury cases to court with fair chance of compensation claims being approved
- How does a personal injury case proceed?
In order to understand how the legal proceedings work, you need to know how personal injury cases work. The following flow shows the process which any case needs to go through to make it to court legally:
No two accident cases are exactly the same. However, there are some standard steps that must be followed by all courts, in all states, from a bird’s eye view:
Defendant performs an action that injures the Plaintiff → Plaintiff Determines that Defendant violated a Legal Duty or law and makes claims for compensation → Settlement Talks Occur either informally or formally through a court trial.
- Personal Injury laws: How are they handled in different states?
As mentioned before, in the United Stated of America, personal injury laws differ according to each state. As part of a legal regulation known as “statute of limitations”, any case that is taken to court must be registered within a certain time frame or else the injured individual’s claims will not be considered. This rule has exceptions according to each state as each US state has a different statute of limitations. For example, the specific time limit to file a case in Kentucky ranges from one year to six years in North Dakota. Moreover, in some states, the type and nature of personal injury claim may also have an effect on the time limit.
The following table shows the statute of limitations duration for several different states:
|State||Statute of limitations|
|3||District of Columbia||3 Years|
· Statute of Limitations: A case of Texas
When talking about Texas’ statute of limitations, anyone from the area, who is considering registering a case of personal injury, needs to be aware of the state specific laws. While the standard states that the victims in Texas have two years to file a lawsuit, there may be exceptions to this rule as well. Claims that fall under the Texas Tort Claims Act have to meet additional pre-lawsuit and post-lawsuit notice requisites. If an individual is unable to meet these requirements within the allowed time, he or she is not allowed to even register their lawsuit. In this case, it is imperative to hire a personal injury attorney as soon as possible so that claims can be realized successfully.
Exceptions to the strict two year rule include:
- If there is a minor child involved in the personal injury case
- The negligent act of the defendant is opaque and not clearly known
- There is fraud involved
- There is mental or physical impairment resulting from the personal injury
Now that we have determined the personal injury statute of limitations laws in Texas, it would be best to leave it up to the individuals, who may be potentially involved in self-injury, to find the best lawyers for them.
FINDING COMPETENT PERSONAL INJURY LAWYERS IN DALLAS, TEXAS:
When looking for a personal injury lawyer, it is important to acquire some general information about the following:
- a) Does the lawyer have sufficient experience in the field of personal injuries?
- b) How many cases handled by the lawyer pertained to personal injuries and personal injury laws?
- c) Who does the personal injury lawyer usually represent? The plaintiff or the defendant?
- d) Is he or she the main lawyer handling the individual’s case or will he or she pass it on to others who are working for him as apprentices?
For the purpose of this article, we will focus on personal injury lawyers belonging to the state of Texas only. There are three major cities in Texas, Houston, San Antonio and Dallas. However, we will be focusing on Dallas only.
- Personal Injury Law firms, Dallas Texas:
“The Barber Law Firm”: The Barber Law Firm is located throughout Texas, with its headquarters in Dallas. With a team of dedicated attorneys, the firm believes in 100% dedication and passion to help its personal injury clients. The team comprises of twelve main attorneys who are considered the super stars of the area and have vast experience in Dallas personal injury laws. Practice areas of the firm include:
- Pedestrian accidents
- Car accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Drunk driver accidents
- Work place injury
- Negligence etc.
- Personal injury lawyers, Dallas, Texas:
- Dallas personal injury attorney, Pablo Alvarado: Dallas injury lawyer, Pablo Alvarado belongs to the “Dallas Personal Injury Law Firm”. He has a repute of representing personal injury cases which fall in the categories of medical expenses, physical pain and anguish, loss of wages or work time, injuries to a spouse, disfigurement and wrongful deaths. Pablo is known for his self-motivation and passion in the persuasion of his clients’ personal injury compensations. He has been in the profession for more than 30 years and has a plethora of knowledge, experiences and resources to take legal action for personal injury cases.
- Dallas Personal Injury Lawyer, Megan David: Megan David (Injury Lawyer, Dallas), acquired her Juries Doctorate degree in 2008. Since the last 7 years, her focus has been on civil common laws which involve personal injury laws. Megan is a dynamic member of Dallas Young Lawyers Association, the Dallas Trial Lawyers Association and Dallas Women Lawyers Association. In 2014, she was named a “Super Lawyer” due to her contributions to the profession.
Just like the laws of Texas, other states also have their own specific laws and competent lawyers that represent well established law firms. Personal injury, as a part of tort law, is a vast field with several other complex laws governing it.
Further references for a personal injury lawyer or attorney:
- Learning the Basics: Personal Injury Law, at http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/personal-injury/introduction.html
- Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer, at http://www.alllaw.com/resources/personal-injury/using-a-personal-injury-lawyer
- Accidents & Personal Injury Law, at http://www.alllaw.com/topics/personal_injury
- Personal Injury Law and Legal Resources, at http://www.lawinfo.com/personal-injury.html
- Personal Injury Law, at http://wiki.lexisnexis.com/academic/index.php?title=Personal_Injury_Law
- Personal Injury Law: Guide to Tort Law, at http://www.hg.org/torts.html
- Statute of Limitations in Texas, at http://www.jrlawfirm.com/library/statute-of-limitations-in-texas/#top
- Texas Statutes of Limitations, at http://research.lawyers.com/texas/texas-statutes-of-limitations.html
- Dallas, Texas Personal Injury Lawyers, at https://www.justia.com/lawyers/injury-accident-law/texas/dallas
- An Experienced Personal Injury Attorney, at http://www.lawinfo.com/law/pablo-alvarado/
External online resources for personal injury lawyers or attorneys:
- Legal Services