Personal Injury Claims
Each kind of claim that falls under the classification of tort claims has two fundamental components. The first of these components is the liability whereas the second is the damages. This is regardless of whether the tort committed was intentional, negligence or strict liability. As such, in order for you as an aggrieved party to be successful in your personal injury claims, you must ensure that you prove both liability and damages. The courts can only award you compensation for your loss upon determining that you have sufficiently proved the existence of damages that occurred as a result of a tort committed by the defendant in question and through proving that the defendant is really liable of committing the said tort.
There are many kinds of personal injury cases. One typical example is that of accidents involving vehicles. This is quite a good example of how personal injury cases functions. In cases where you fall victim of an accident where the driver who caused the accident failed to exercise reasonable care, then you being the victim will be entitled to make a negligence claim in a "fault" state. This is simply because every driver is obligated to ensure that they carry out reasonable care whenever they are on the road (ABA Website, 2017). A breach of this duty by drivers thereby results in damages which upon being sufficiently proved shall require the said driver to compensate the injured party through enabling them to recover their damages. The system may however be different in certain states depending on the legislation that has been put in place in those said states. Aside from motor vehicle accidents, tort claims can stem from a variety of situations as well. Examples of such situations are inclusive of medical malpractice amongst very many other situations.
Other than negligence, other grounds for personal injury claims are inclusive of strict liability which is has witnessed a significant growth with regards to tort law in the recent past. Strict liability is important as it helps making designers and manufacturers strictly liable for injuries that arise form defective products. A good example lies in the case of Donoghue versus Stevenson where the facts of the case were such that, Mrs. Donoghue drinking a bottle of ginger beer in a café in Paisley, Renfrewshire. A dead snail was in the bottle. She fell ill, and she sued the ginger beer manufacturer, Mr Stevenson. The House of Lords held that the manufacturer owed a duty of care to her, which was breached, because it was reasonably foreseeable that failure to ensure the product's safety would lead to harm of consumers (Martin, 2008). Such cases do not need the injured person to establish negligence of the manufacturer. The injured person is only required to prove that the product was designed or manufactured in a manner that made it unreasonably dangerous when used as intended (ABA Website, 2017).
The last ground for personal injury is that of intentional wrongs. Examples of such wrongs are inclusive of assault and battery as well as false imprisonment.
It is important to note that just like other civil claims, there are certain time limits with regards to filing of personal injury claims. These time limits are referred to as "statutes of limitations," and their function is to regulate the period of time during which you must file a personal injury lawsuit (ABA Website, 2017). These statutes of limitations vary depending on the regulations provided in different states. Failure to file for a personal injury case in due time leads to the case being thrown out automatically.
American Bar Association Website, (2017). Personal injury. Retrieved on January 24th, 2017 from http://www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/resources/law_issues_for_consumers/injury_basis.html
Martin, R. T. (2008). "The Most Famous Litigant". Donoghue vs. Stevenson Digital Resources. Scottish Council of Law Reporting.