Did You Suffer Accidental Injuries in Gwinnett County? Call a Personal Injury Lawyer at Brauns Law, PC for Help
Most people never think they will need to call a personal injury lawyer. However, serious accidents and injuries can happen when you least expect it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 30 million people in the United States visited emergency rooms in a single year due to accidental injuries. This means that about ten percent of the population suffers accidental injuries each year, and these statistics illustrate that an injury could happen to you or a family member at any time.
If you’ve suffered an injury, what do you do next? First, always get the medical attention you need immediately. Getting a proper diagnosis and stabilizing your condition should be the priority. Then, always call an attorney you can trust to advise you of your legal rights as an accident victim.
Brauns Law, PC is here to help injured clients in and around Gwinnett County. Choosing a lawyer can be an overwhelming process, as so many firms claim they can help. You do not want a law firm that will treat you like a case number, however. Dealing with an injury is stressful enough—you do not want to feel like you lawyer sees you as dollar signs, or worry whether your lawyer has your best interests in mind.
Personal Injury FAQ
Here at Brauns Law, our clients frequently have questions about the services we provide and the laws that shape their cases. Below are some of the questions they most commonly ask, and our answers.
What is personal injury law?
Personal injury refers to an area of law that deals with compensating people injured by someone else’s wrongful conduct. In everyday life, we owe our fellow citizens what the law calls a duty of care. As part of living in a community, we all are expected to conduct ourselves in a reasonable manner that doesn’t harm others. When someone breaches that duty by acting in a way that hurts someone else, even if not on purpose, the law says the person who breached the duty will owe damages to the person harmed. This, in the most basic sense, is what personal injury law is about.
From this simple explanation, you can also see how personal injury law plays an essential role in civic life. Personal injury law gives people the ability to remedy physical harm done to them without resorting to violence or retribution. It also plays a critical part in shaping how large enterprises conduct themselves. By holding people and companies financially accountable for their wrongful actions, personal injury law helps to keep the population safe and forms a foundation of what it means to receive justice.
It is also important to understand what personal injury law is not. Personal injury law sits separate and apart from criminal law, which aims to punish violations of criminal statutes. The wrong someone does to you can constitute both a crime and an act that brings personal injury law into play. But more often, personal injury law deals with situations in which someone did not necessarily intend to do harm, but did harm anyway. Personal injury law is also separate from other areas of law, such as such as breaches of contract or property disputes, that address acts that don’t have physical injury component.
What is negligence?
Negligence is the core concept of personal injury law. In a general sense, it means failing to exercise reasonable care and hurting someone as a result. In more technical language, the law defines negligence by the following requirements:
- – The existence of a legally-recognized duty of care;
- – A breach of the duty of care; and
- – Damages to another person caused by the breach.
For example, everyone who drives a car owes a duty of care to drive safely so as not to hurt anyone else on the road. The law deems a driver negligent if he breaches that duty by, say, speeding, his breach leads to an accident, and someone gets injured in that accident.
What situations does personal injury cover?
Personal injury law covers any life situation in which someone else’s actions cause physical or emotional harm to another human being. Personal injury lawyers frequently represent clients in motor vehicle accidents, workplace accidents, slip and fall accidents, accidents involving product defects, and cases involving professional negligence (such as medical malpractice). \
What damages are recoverable in a personal injury case?
A personal injury legal claim ordinarily seeks both economic and non-economic damages. In Georgia, economic damages are referred to as special damages, and include medical and other costs stemming from an accident, as well as lost wages from missing work.
Special damages in Georgia can be both past and future. Suppose a car accident shattered one of your legs. The doctor has indicated that you will need several surgeries plus physical therapy to fully regain the use of your leg, and so far, you have only had one surgery. You can legally claim compensation for:
- – The cost of surgeries you have had already
- – The cost of the surgeries yet to come
- – The cost of physical therapy to fully restore the use of your leg
Similarly, if you have lost six weeks’ worth of work but the surgeries are expected to make you lose eight weeks more, your legal claim can typically include lost wages for both periods.
In Georgia, non-economic damages are called general damages. These include such categories as pain and suffering. These are not always easy to quantify, but pain and suffering damages are a very real part of personal injuries.
I was in a car accident. Should I contact an insurance company, or bring a personal injury suit?
Neither. You should contact an experienced personal injury attorney.
If someone else’s actions injured you, then you may have a legal claim against that person for damages. If that person carries insurance, the insurance may all or part of your claim. But seeking compensation from someone else’s liability insurance is not the same as, say, filing a claim with your own homeowner’s insurance after a fire. Liability carries stay in business by trying to keep claim payments to a minimum. It takes the skill and expertise of an experienced personal injury attorney to conduct a successful negotiation with a liability carrier.
Sometimes it’s not possible to achieve a fair settlement of a personal injury claim through negotiation. In that case, you and your attorney may decide to take legal action in Georgia courts. Filing that action and pursuing it effectively and efficiently requires the know-how of an attorney. It’s never a good idea to try to pursue a lawsuit on your own.
How long do I have to bring a personal injury suit?
In Georgia, in most cases, you have two years from the date of accident or injury to bring a legal case against the party who caused the injury. This is what is known as the statute of limitations.
Discuss the accident with an attorney as soon as possible. Personal injury cases, like any other case, require evidence. Police reports, medical records, and pictures of your injuries can all constitute evidence. The sooner your attorney beings collecting evidence, the more reliable and thorough that evidence will be, and the stronger your chances will be of recovering the compensation you deserve.
How can a personal injury attorney help?
Personal injury law forms a core, essential part of our court system and our country. The most reliable way to receive the full benefit of the protections afforded by personal injury law is to seek the advice of an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after you sustain an injury.