We all hear a lot about personal injury law, thanks to adverts on TV and online. However, it may feel like you don’t actually know anything about it. When it comes to your rights, it’s well worth knowing how tort law, or personal injury law, works. In a perfect world, you may never need it. Just in case though it’s worth reviewing the basics from an expert.
What does tort law do?
Put simply, it allows an injured party to go to court and claim a legal remedy from the party who injured them. This remedy is cover all of the losses the injured party has suffered due to their injury. The injury has usually occurred due to the carelessness or maliciousness of the other party. Slip and fall attorneys Fort Lauderdale are there to ensure the injured party gets what they need.
Where personal injury laws may apply
There are several different areas where tort law may apply to you:
– Accidents: Accidents are when a person is injured accidentally, due to the carelessness of another. This can apply to car accidents, slip and fall injuries, or medical malpractice.
– Intentional acts: This can be applied where intentional harm has been caused to another person. This is most commonly seen in assault and battery cases.
– Defective products: These are less common, but it is possible for a defendant to be found guilty of personal harm neither by accident or actual intent. This is most often seen in defective product cases, where somebody has been injured by a product breaking down or working incorrectly.
– Defamation: This happens when the defendant makes comments that are harmful to another person’s reputation.
Who makes personal injury laws?
Personal injury laws date back to ‘common law’ rulings. These happened when cases came before a judge, who would have to make a ruling that was the first of its kind. When other courts came across similar cases, they would defer to the judge’s case in order to make a decision. That way, the law has been passed down.
Common law does vary from state to state, so if you want to make a personal injury claim you would be wise to check the laws in your state first. If needed, slip and fall lawyers Ford Lauderdale will be able to help you.
How does a personal injury case proceed?
No two accidents are quite the same, so no two tort cases will be quite the same, either. However, they will follow these basic steps.
– Defendant causes injury to the plaintiff: This can come under any of the categories described above, but the outcome will be that the plaintiff is now injured. They’ll now suffer some kind of effect in their lives due to this accident. The only exception is when the harm comes due to a breach in contract, which comes under ‘contractual law’.
– Plaintiff decides defendant has breached a legal duty: The legal duty will vary, depending on how the plaintiff was injured. For example, a driver has a legal duty to drive their vehicle with due care and attention. A medical practitioner has the legal duty to perform their job with the wellbeing of the patient as their main priority. A company has a legal duty to create and sell products that will cause harm to their customers.
– Settlement talks occur: If it is clear that the defendant has caused harm to the plaintiff, they or their insurance company may wish to settle out of court. A settlement means that the defendant will pay an agreed amount to cover the plaintiff’s losses, in return for the plaintiff being held to the promise not to file a lawsuit.
– A lawsuit is filed: If the plaintiff isn’t willing to accept settlement out of the court, or if the defendant isn’t willing to offer a settlement, a lawsuit may be filed. A settlement can still be agreed upon at any point during the court case.
Statute of limitations
If you’re deciding whether to start legal proceedings, you should act within the statute of limitations for your injury. This is the period of time within which you can claim for your injury, and it starts when you were injured or discovered the injury. The time allowed depends on your state and the injury you suffered, so you’ll want to research this before you make your claim. If this is the case, you can call on a slip and fall law firm Fort Lauderdale to help you.
These are the basics you need to know if you’re thinking of filing a claim. If you’re looking to claim for personal injury, get in touch with us at Florida Injury Lawyers.