|Blog Post: March 2017
Personal Injury Lawsuits: What You Should Know
When you've suffered an accident or injury, another party may be liable. If this is the case, you have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. What should you do?
- Gather all pertinent documents and any evidence at your disposal.
- Contact Perna & Abracht, LLC at (610) 444-0933 to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who will guide you and protect your interests every step of the way.
Documenting everything regarding your injury is vital to your case. Your Perna & Abracht, LLC attorney can help you with the key information. Still, much of the record keeping should be done from the moment of the accident, before you even meet with your attorney. Write down everything you remember about what happened before, during, and after the accident. Video, photos, and other witness testimonies will help a great deal.
Your attorney also will need documented evidence proving the extent of your injuries. Be sure to include not only physical injuries, but mental and emotional injuries as well. Your attorney may instruct you to keep records of all your treatments, and to record any impact on your work and personal life. You may want to consider keeping an hourly journal to assist your personal injury lawyer in building your case.
If you were in a car accident, take photos of the scene and obtain all witness names and statements. If a defective product injured you, keep the product in precisely the condition it was at the moment of the injury. Also keep all packaging, instructions, and receipts that accompanied the product. In all cases, visual evidence is helpful to your attorney, as are expert testimonies from professionals who can corroborate your story. Your attorney will guide you in gathering evidence to build your case.
Personal Injury Settlements
Your attorney will take your case through civil court proceedings and will try and contact the other party to reach a settlement (filing an official lawsuit may not be necessary).
Settlements may occur before, during or after any lawsuit is filed. It is almost always best to seek this course first as it the fastest and easiest way to reach an acceptable conclusion for both parties. Your lawyer will negotiate with the opposing insurance adjuster or lawyer, and then present the proposed settlement terms to you for consideration.
If you accept a settlement offer, you will agree to cease any legal action towards the defendant for an agreed-upon monetary amount. Special cases may require further action beyond monetary compensation. If both parties agree to the terms, your lawyer can settle the case without ever taking it to civil court. For your own protection, be sure to consult with your Perna & Abracht, LLC attorney before agreeing to any settlement. This is because such settlement offers are typically low before an attorney begins work on your behalf.
Settling a personal injury lawsuit out of court can be beneficial. It spares you the duress of what could be a nasty and exhausting trial. Additionally, you can structure the settlement to meet your disability needs or to take advantage of tax benefits. Your attorney will be able to recommend the best settlement structure for you.
On the other hand, if your case is strong enough, you may be able to obtain a larger settlement by going to court. Your attorney will want you to consider your future needs because your injuries may result in future problems that you have not yet experienced. Additionally, simple changes in the economy could render today's settlement amount insufficient in future years.
We strongly suggest that you sit down as soon as possible with your Perna & Abracht, LLC attorney to discuss your injuries and the circumstances of your case so that you can select the best course of action.