5 Common personal injury terms

Every personal injury case is different. Although they vary, here are five common personal injury terms that are typically involved in every type of personal injury case.

Statute of limitations

This term refers to the time period you may file a claim for damages. This date is set by law and once it passes, any claims for damages will be considered invalid. To learn what the statute of limitations is for your type case, click here. In Texas, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is 2 years after the incident.

Torts and Intentional torts

Torts are wrongful acts that harm someone else, but is not a crime. Torts can be divided into several subcategories. Almost every action in civil suits are torts. Intentional torts are where the wrongful act was on purpose. This does not mean the result of the act was purposeful. If you scared someone with a heart condition and caused their heart attack, you purposely scared them, but may not have purposely given them a heart attack.

Negligence

This refers to failure to act with reasonable care or carelessness. There are four things you must prove to prove negligence:

  1. The defendant had an obligation to the plaintiff.
  2. The defendant violated that duty.
  3. The violation caused damage to the plaintiff.
  4. Actual damages exist.

Burden of Proof

This term refers to the plaintiff’s responsibility to prove their claims are true. It is up to the plaintiff to show the defendant is liable. It must be proven that the defendant’s actions more than likely caused the injuries.

Damages

This refers to what the plaintiff is attempting to recover in the lawsuit. For personal injury, damages equal money. There are two categories of damages. The first is economic damages that are quantifiable, such as medical bills, wage loss, auto repair and more. The second category is non-economic damages that are not quantifiable. This can be pain, suffering and humiliation.

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