What Are the Different Types of Personal Injury Cases?
Looking for a Reno Personal Injury Lawyer with Relevant Experience
If you suffer an injury due to someone else’s actions, you may have grounds to file a lawsuit. In some cases, like claims for injuries caused by defective products, Nevada law imposes strict liability on another party.
In cases where you can prove intent, like sexual assault, you can pursue additional compensation in the form of punitive damages.
However, most personal injury cases arise from negligence. Some common types of personal injury cases are:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Commercial truck accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Boat accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Premises liability
- Dog bites
- Product liability
- Medical malpractice
- Assault and battery
- Sexual assault and abuse.
Because every case is different, you should speak with our Reno personal injury attorneys to determine whether your accident will support a claim for injury compensation.
When Should I File a Personal Injury Claim?
It would be unfair for you to bear the burden of paying medical bills or to suffer a loss of income after an accident that was not your fault. Instead, these burdens should fall on the person or entity that caused your injuries.
You should have the freedom to focus on your recovery, rather than rushing back to work or skipping medical treatment because of a mounting pile of bills. Skimping on treatment could leave you with permanent disabilities that cause pain and limit your abilities for the rest of your life.
While some accident victims rely on their health insurance or the MedPay coverage in their auto insurance policy rather than pursuing an injury claim, there are limitations to the ways your coverage can be used.
Limitations on using health insurance and MedPay for your injuries include:
- Health insurance may require you to meet a deductible or pay a copay for treatment.
- MedPay may not cover ongoing or long-term medical expenses.
- Healthcare providers might not accept MedPay coverage.
- If you pay out of pocket, your insurer could reject reimbursement.
If you choose to pursue an injury claim, you can seek compensation for all your relevant medical expenses, including any copays or deductibles you paid upfront. If you win or settle your case, you can use some of the funds to pay your medical providers.
Your compensation should adequately cover your present and future expenses for injuries related to your accident. This means that an adequate settlement offer or award should be enough to cover your expenses for ongoing treatment, therapy, or long-term care, if needed.
What You Need to Prove to Get Injury Compensation
Our Reno Personal Injury Lawyers Explain the Compensation Process
To recover injury compensation, you and your Reno personal injury attorney must prove liability for your injuries. In a case based on an intentional act, you will usually need to prove intent and causation.
Intent means that the person who caused your injury intended to perform the injurious action. The law does not require you to prove that the person intended to injure you. Instead, causation means that the person’s actions were a step in the sequence of events that caused your injury.
In a strict liability case, you need to prove that the cause of your injury fell within the control of the person or company involved. In a product liability case, for example, you must show that the manufacturer, designer, or seller put a defective product into the stream of commerce and that you suffered an injury as a result.
Most cases stem from negligence. Negligence in Nevada requires proof of four elements:
The person or business you sue must have owed you a duty of care. Some examples of legal duties include:
- Drivers owe a duty to other road users.
- Healthcare providers owe a duty of care to their patients.
- Owners and occupiers of a property owe a duty to those who are invited onto the premises.
A person or business satisfies its duty by acting in a reasonably prudent manner. This means that the person or business must act with good judgment and common sense in the given circumstances.
To be negligent, the person or business must have breached their duty of reasonable care. The breach might happen in a number of ways, depending on the nature of your accident. For example, people and businesses can breach their duties by:
- Driving in an unreasonably dangerous way
- Failing to provide a level of medical care recognized as reasonable by other healthcare providers
- Neglecting to discover or repair hazards on the premises in a reasonable time and manner.
Bear in mind that not all injuries support an injury claim. If the person or business acted reasonably and you were still injured, negligence would be difficult to prove.
Almost any time you suffer an injury, expenses can pile up. Examples of common economic damages include:
- Medical bills
- Prescription drug costs
- Physical or mental health therapy
- Lost salary or wages
- Diminished earning capacity.
You could also have non-economic damages. These damages result when an injury diminishes your quality of life. Examples of non-economic losses include physical pain, mental suffering, and loss of the ability to participate meaningfully in certain activities.
For a negligence case, the breach of duty must have caused your damages. Under Nevada law, causation has two parts.
Cause-in-fact means that the breach was an event in the series of events that led to your injury. Suppose that someone threw a brick at your car. Even if the brick did not hit you directly, if you swerved and hit a light pole, the person who threw the brick was still a cause-in-fact of your crash and your injuries.
Proximate cause means that your injuries were a reasonably foreseeable result of the breach. You do not need to prove that the person or business knew that your exact injuries would occur. Instead, you must show that the breach was the type of act or omission that could reasonably injure someone.
For example, failing to empty the trash cans in a parking structure might be a bad business practice. But a Nevada court might not consider that failure to be the proximate cause of a car accident when wind-blown trash from an overflowing can obscured your view and caused you to hit a parked car.
Every case is unique, and the attorney you choose to represent you matters. Call Leverty & Associates Law at (775) 322-6636 to set up a free consultation with our experienced personal injury lawyers in Reno. We can evaluate the facts of your case to assess the strength and value of your injury claim.
How Do I Pursue Compensation in a Personal Injury Case?
We Know What It Takes to Battle Uncooperative Insurance Companies
Our Reno personal injury attorney will identify all possible sources of compensation, including the at-fault party’s assets and insurance policies. Insurance policies are contracts between the insurer and the insured. When the insured incurs a liability listed in the policy, the insurer should pay the claimant.
Every owner of a registered vehicle in Nevada is required to carry liability insurance. When a driver causes an accident, their insurer has a contractual duty to investigate the claims that are filed and negotiate with the claimant in good faith. If it fails to do so, the insurer can become liable for its own bad faith actions, on top of the actions of the insured party.
Most people and businesses have insurance coverage. Homeowner’s insurance, business liability insurance, property insurance, and other policies might be used to cover damages suffered when an insured person or business causes an injury.
For example, Nevada does not require boat owners to carry liability insurance. But in some cases, creative personal injury lawyers can find a way to claim coverage under the boater’s auto or home insurance policy.
Our skilled personal injury attorneys in Reno have knowledge and experience in insurance law that is unmatched by other Reno law firms. Gene Leverty represented insurance companies for over ten years. He is also a former Nevada deputy insurance commissioner. Patrick Leverty earned a Master of Laws (LLM) degree in insurance law and is listed on The National Trial Lawyers list of Top 10 Insurance Bad Faith Trial Lawyers – Nevada.
A high level of understanding of insurance law helps our firm’s lawyers to identify all sources of insurance coverage that might be able to cover a client’s injuries. Aggregating policies in this way can help our attorneys to fight for the full compensation a client may be entitled to.
Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury Law
Get Answers from our Reno Personal Injury Attorneys
Personal injury law varies from state to state. When you need answers about your personal injury case, look to someone with experience and knowledge in the relevant area of law. Our lawyers at Leverty & Associates Law include a Nevada Justice Association-certified Personal Injury Specialist.
To help you better understand your ability to file a personal injury case, here are a few of the most common questions our clients ask about personal injury cases.
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