Personal injury cases all have one thing in common: they are legal “torts” from physically-injured parties who seek to hold at-fault parties (“tortfeasors”) liable for their medical costs, lost wages, mental anguish, and more. If that definition seems broad, frankly, that’s because it is.
In order to allow people in all kinds of situations the flexibility to pursue damages against those who’ve injured them, personal injury is a broad practice are. Below we’ve arranged the top 5 most common personal injury claims in the nation. If any of these have happened to you, be sure to contact our Fort Worth personal injury lawyer today at (817) 503-9200.
It should be noted that the value of a claim is as individual and varying as the person who brings the claim. Factors include the seriousness of the injury, the culpability of the both the claimant and the tortfeasor, the ability of the tortfeasor to respond in money damages or through insurance and the specific facts of each claim. All claims are judged on their merit on a case-by-case basis. If you want to know the whether your potential claim has merit, you’ll need to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney in a Complimentary Strategy Session.
#1: Car Accident Claims
There are about 10 million car accidents of all kinds every year according to the National Safety Council—injuring roughly about 2.4 million people every year as reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. With millions of injuries, ranging from the minor to the life-altering, it’s no wonder that so many people turn to personal injury lawyers for help. According to Department of Justice (DOJ) statistics from 2005, car accident cases made up 57% of injury tort cases nationwide.
Car accident lawyers are usually adept at identifying the factors that led to a car crash in specific cases. Their investigations are geared towards building cases that secure money for their clients’ well-being—even if the client was led to believe the crash was their fault. Everything from road conditions to whether the other driver was sleep-deprived are part of a car accident lawyer’s investigative process.
#2: Medical Malpractice Claims
Statistics according to the Department of Justice have shown that medical malpractice claims have grown in prevalence over the last few years. In Texas, just the opposite is true due to “tort reform” efforts which have all but eliminated Medical Malpractice claims in Texas. We no longer handle these types of claims and very few attorneys do. Notwithstanding, while medical technology has improved the lives of millions of Americans, injuries from faulty medical or pharmaceutical products have also seemed to increase. In 2005, the same study mentioned above revealed that medical malpractice cases made up 15% of injury tort cases nationwide – NOT in Texas.
#3: Premises Liability Claims
These cases usually involve negligence on the part of a public entity or business, such as a hotel or restaurant. A significant portion of premises liability cases are known as “slip-and-fall” cases, where a plaintiff will injure themselves as a direct result of the business owner’s negligence. For example, if a business does not handle spills vigilantly, they may be liable for the medical treatment of someone who slips on their premises.
What most people do not realize is that just because someone falls at a store or business, that does not make the owner automatically liable for the fall. It must be demonstrated that the owner knew or should have known of the unreasonably dangerous condition and either failed to make the condition reasonably safe AFTER learning of the condition or warning the consumer of the dangerous condition of which the owner was aware or should have been aware.
Maintaining a safe environment for visitors is the responsibility of every business owner or facility manager. Their legal obligation is known as a “duty of care.” This duty is actually true of every single person, but it is particularly relevant for facilities that have a lot of foot traffic. Premises liability cases make up about 11.4% of civil injury cases.
#4: Dog Bite Cases
At only 4.7% of civil injury torts, dog bite cases may not seem like a relevant area of civil law, but what it lacks in prevalence it provides in importance. Dog bite cases can be especially terrifying to the victims who are usually children or the elderly. The fear and anxiety these attacks can have on the victims is often overpowering and long lasting. Currently, approximately 1/3 of all homeowners claims involve dog bites.
By providing the victims of dog bites with the ability to receive financial compensation from wrongdoers, they are able to receive treatment for both physical and mental damages.
#5: Product Liability Claims
At just over 2% of civil torts, product liability cases actually provide the largest average awards of any personal injury practice area. Manufacturers have a legal obligation to design, build, and sell products that are safe for the public to use. This legal obligation provides the grounds for lawsuits when people are hurt by the products they use. Due to the expensive nature of a product liability claim, the injuries suffered have to be severe and permanent to economically justify the pursuit of a product liability claim.
Product liability defects come in three forms: design defects, manufacturing defects, and advertising defects. Companies are responsible for all three of these defects, but the kind of defect will determine whether your claim will lead to a recall of the products. Some of the most common types of product liability claims are those against the manufacturers of drugs and medical devices.
Have You Been Injured In A Texas Accident?
If you've been injured you need to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Bedford, Texas office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation. We help personal injury clients throughout Dallas, Fort Worth, Arlington as well as all areas of Texas.