Personal injury refers to the fact that the injury is to one’s ‘person’, thereby differentiating it from property damage. In personal injury law, the at-fault person (sometimes known as a tortfeasor) is responsible for all of the injuries caused by his or her negligence, or by any other unlawful conduct. If you are injured as a direct result of that conduct, you are entitled to be fully compensated for all the injuries that you suffered. In the law, the goal is to make the injured party whole. That is, the purpose of monetary compensation is to try to restore you and your family to the position that you were in before your accident.
Once it is clear that the wrongdoer is at fault for the accident, an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you fully identify and understand your injuries. Your law firm will obtain and review your medical records and talk with you, your family and even your physicians to fully understand your injuries and how they have affected your life. Using prior experience with similar cases, your lawyer will then be able to predict the range of dollar amounts a jury could award. This is what personal injury attorneys do.
In recent years, insurance companies and their lobbyists have put forth a great deal of propaganda that casts personal injury victims and their lawyers in an unfavorable light. They do this purposely to bias potential jurors against personal injury victims and in favor of the people and insurance companies they sue. Often, the media exacerbates this problem by highlighting bizarre or rare multi-million-dollar cases. This creates the mistaken perception that most people pursuing personal injury claims receive unjust windfalls, or do not entirely deserve the compensation they receive. Nothing is further from the truth. In reality, most people injured by careless wrongdoers are hardworking Americans who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The entire process of navigating this complex and often confusing system is called Personal Injury Law.