What is a personal injury claim?
A personal injury case is any type of claim where a person has been injured due to someone else’s carelessness, recklessness or intentional act. Under Missouri or Kansas law, an injured person may assert a legal claim to recover compensation for injuries and other damages caused by the at-fault party. Personal injury claims can result from a car accident, truck crash or motorcycle accident, dangerous property condition, defective product, dog bite — the possibilities are endless.
What is a wrongful death claim?
If someone’s carelessness, recklessness or intentional act causes the death of a person, a “wrongful death” claim arises under Missouri and Kansas law. The law of each state differs regarding what damages can be recovered in a wrongful death case. You will need an attorney who understands the particular wrongful death laws that apply.
What if your property was damaged?
If you were in a car accident and the only damage was to your car, you do not have a personal injury claim. However, you may have a property damage case. Our firm does not handle cases with no injuries and only property damage, but there are attorneys who do. We can help refer you to one.
If you were injured and your car was damaged, then you have both a personal injury and a property damage claim. Your insurance company (if you have collision coverage) or the other driver’s insurance company may pay your property damage claim. Before you can determine what damages you are entitled able to recover, you must first be able to prove you have a valid personal injury claim under applicable law.
What must you prove to recover damages?
You are not entitled to money just because you were hurt. You have to prove certain things to be legally entitled to compensation. To successfully assert a personal injury claim, you must prove that your injuries and damages were caused by someone else’s carelessness, recklessness or intentional act.
If you have been injured in an accident and no one was at fault, then you will lose your case, and you will not recover any money. If you sue the wrong person, or if you wait too long to sue, you will also lose your case. If you already had an injury before the accident, you are only entitled to compensation to the extent your injury was made worse by the accident. This is sometimes difficult to prove. If you were partially at fault for the accident, you may not be able to recover anything, or your recovery may be reduced by the amount you were at fault, depending on the state law that applies and how much you were at fault.
Our law firm can help you understand and protect your legal rights.
After an accident, the most important thing is to seek prompt medical treatment for your injuries. However, as you progress in your recovery, you also need to be thinking about how to protect your legal rights. Unfortunately, many injury victims do not think about this until it is too late. They may not properly document what happened, conduct an investigation into the cause of the accident, or take the steps necessary to pursue a settlement or file a lawsuit.
Our experience in dealing with personal injury and wrongful death cases has taught us that accidents can happen in many different ways and for many different reasons. By handling a wide variety of injury cases, we know how critical it is to conduct an immediate investigation and take certain steps to protect your claim. This may include hiring expert investigators, forensic experts, engineers or other professionals necessary to prove your claim. Our firm advances these costs for our personal injury clients so they do not have to incur that expense. We also help develop and implement a strategy to maximize your recovery so you can focus on what is most important — getting better.
For more information about personal injury claims in Missouri and Kansas, please download a free copy of my book, Crash Course, from our website. You can also contact our firm by calling (816) 203-0143 or by filling out a form on our Contact Us page. Contacting us is FREE and confidential and does not make us your lawyer. If we cannot help, we will try to refer you to an attorney who can.