A serious injury can be a life-altering event for you and your family. Beyond the pain and suffering you have endured, you might also face significant financial hardship as a result of:
- Medical expenses;
- Lost wages during recovery;
- Lost future wages because of long-lasting effects of the injury; and
- Damaged or destroyed property.
In addition to receiving compensation for those expenses, you may also be able to collect punitive damages or pain-and-suffering damages if another party, such as a person or company, was negligent and caused your injury.
The Johnson City personal injury lawyers at the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC can help. We can determine whether the facts of your case support a personal injury suit and gather the evidence needed to make the strongest argument on your behalf. Call us today at 865-546-1111 for a free case evaluation.
What should I do after an injury?
If you suffered an injury after an accident, the first thing you should is seek medical attention and keep all documentation of your treatment, especially medical bills. If you are able, you should next contact your insurer to make them aware of the incident.
It is important to choose your words carefully when dealing with your insurer. The insurance company may record any information you provide and use it later to reduce your claim or deny it altogether. Our team of attorneys can deal with your insurance company for you, making sure to provide information that will not hurt your chances at compensation.
We will also work quickly to document the scene of your injury. This could mean taking photos of the surrounding area, requesting a copy of a police report if law enforcement responded to the scene, and obtaining security camera footage depicting the events that led to your injury. We will use this evidence—in conjunction with your medical bills and employment records—to prove what happened in your case and establish your right to compensation.
What does negligence have to do with my accident?
Negligence is a key component of Tennessee tort law. A tort is any action or mistake that causes injury to another party or their property. By acting in a way that inflicts injury or property damage upon the plaintiff, a person or company is negligent under state law. This can also be true of someone whose failure to act causes harm.
Tennessee is like most states when it comes to proving negligence. A key concept here is “duty,” which is an action, or lack of action, that ensures the safety of another person—in this case, the plaintiff. If the plaintiff demonstrates that the defendant owed a duty and violated it in such a way that caused the plaintiff a quantifiable injury, the defendant may be responsible for damages.
If another party’s negligence caused your injury, we can file a claim on your behalf and argue your case until the party responsible for your injury pays the damages you deserve.
How can I get compensation for my injuries?
Who will pay your damages will depend on the kind of accident that caused your injury. In many cases, you will be dealing with the defendant’s insurer. Insurance companies are well-equipped to fight against legitimate claims. They may try to pay you as little as possible to protect their bottom line.
This is where we can help. We will conduct a thorough investigation to establish a firm case and make sure the negligent party is accountable for the damages you deserve. If necessary, we can consult medical experts about the extent of your injuries or speak with experts to reconstruct the event that resulted in those injuries.
The other party’s insurer may offer you a settlement in order to avoid a lawsuit. It is likely that such a sum will be less than you deserve. We will keep fighting to get you a fair settlement that accounts for all of your damages.
What if the accident was partly my fault?
Tennessee has a shared fault system for injury cases known as modified comparative negligence. This means that if you file a claim or lawsuit, the defendant might turn around and claim the accident was at least partly your fault. Based on the facts of the case, the court will then assign a percentage of the fault to each party, which then affects the amount of damages you may claim.
For example, if you are in a car accident and the court decides you were 10% at fault, you may only claim 90% of the damages. As long as you are less than 50% at fault, you can still claim some damages, but the more at fault you bear, the less you can claim.
The defendant’s legal counsel or insurer will do everything possible to minimize the amount they have to pay. We are here to defend you against such a counter-claim.
It is also possible that a third party contributed to your injuries. For example, if an accident occurred because the defendant’s employer was negligent or created an environment that allowed your injury to happen, that employer may also be liable for damages. Personal injury cases are complex, especially when they involve a third party. Contact us today for help sorting your claim out.
How soon should I file a claim?
In Tennessee, there is a one-year statute of limitations on personal injury claims to ensure cases proceed in a timely fashion and do not clog up the court system. This means you have one year to take action from the day the injury occurs. Since time is a factor, you should contact us as soon as possible following an accident.
How can I get help with my claim?
At this difficult time, securing the right legal help is one of the most important steps you can take. If you suffered an injury in the Johnson City area, the attorneys with the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC are here to fight for you. Call 865-546-1111 today to arrange a free consultation.