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Protecting Your Legal Rights: 6 Essential Facts You Must Know about Personal Injury Law

Drivers have the responsibility of exercising reasonable care on road. But when the law is breached, it may ultimately result in an automobile accident. Negligence on one person’s part makes the victim bear the brunt of it.

This is where personal injury law comes into the picture.

Most of us may be familiar with the phrase – personal injury, but not many are sure what it means.

Personal injury law refers to the legal remedies and defenses involved in civil lawsuits brought as a result of wrongful conduct. A majority of personal injury cases are the result of negligence. Automobile accident is one of the many typical examples of personal injury cases.

If you don’t want to be a victim of personal injury and want to protect your legal rights, the most essential step is to know about the various aspects of personal injury law. This can save you a lot of hassle.

Here are six crucial facts you must know about personal injury law.

1. Negligence and Other Basis of Personal Injury Case

Negligence is one of the many liabilities in a majority of personal injury cases. Apart from that, there are others including:

• Premises liability, which involves slipping or tripping and falling.

• Professional malpractice that involves an act of carelessness committed by a professional such as a doctor, a professor or an accountant.

• Product liability refers to the harm caused by a defective product.

• Intentional wrongs can also be the basis for a personal injury claim. This includes assault, battery, false imprisonment, trespass, theft, and infliction of emotional distress. For instance, if a store detective wrongly detains you for shoplifting, you may be able to file a suit for false imprisonment.

2. Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Once you file a lawsuit, you become the plaintiff, whereas the person who has injured you becomes the defendant. The process of gathering facts commences henceforth. Lawyers of both the sides try to acquire as much of evidence as possible. This happens by means of exchange of documents and interrogations. Additionally, there is the process of discovery, wherein questions are asked to both the plaintiff and the defendant in person and under oath.

A majority of the cases get settled out of court before trial. Only a limited number of cases ever go into trial. Only about 2% of civil suits are actually tried before the courts. Moreover, there are alternatives to going to trial, including settlement discussions and meetings or mediation. A mediator is a neutral third party, usually a former lawyer or a judge who helps facilitate a settlement between the parties.

Settling a case outside the court helps in achieving quicker solutions.

3. Calculation of Compensation

The personal injury law clearly states that if harm is caused due to someone else’s negligence, then they can be held responsible to pay medical bills for the physical injury as well as for the trauma caused to the plaintiff.

It is easy to calculate the expenses of the medical bills as well as the lost time from work. On the other hand, calculating the compensation for the physical pain or the emotional distress is quite difficult. In such cases, it’s up to your lawyer, insurance companies and the jury to decide a fair and a reasonable amount of money as compensation.

There are chances of disputes when no one takes the blame. You and your lawyer will have to be prepared well in advance for such situations as well.

4. Amount of Time to File a Lawsuit

Every state has a certain time limit, during which the personal injury lawsuit needs to be filed. This is known as the ‘statute of limitations.’

According to this, the period of time for filing the lawsuit begins when the plaintiff is injured or discovers the injury. These time limitations are established by the state law and the jury. Moreover, it depends on two major factors:

• It can vary by the type of injury.

• It can vary from state to state.

5. Action Taken Against Defendants

First you need to clearly understand that personal injury cases are not criminal cases. They are civil cases. When it comes to criminal cases, defendants get punished. On the other hand, in civil cases defendants do not receive jail terms or strict fines as punishments.

There are chances that in such civil disputes, juries and courts can award what the law calls punitive damages when the defendant’s intentional acts have injured you. But bear in mind, these awards are rare.

6. Importance of Having a lawyer

Personal injury cases require a meticulous and a detailed understanding of the facts, various laws associated with it and the entire legal process.

If an accident has impacted your life in a major way, then an experienced attorney can help you out to claim your compensation. Only he/she can tell you whether you should file a lawsuit. Their evaluation can hold a lot of importance.

However, it is not compulsory to have an attorney representing you, but having one by your side can make things easier. You can get a better understanding of your legal rights.

There are various ways to find a dedicated personal injury lawyer. One convenient way to find a law firm in your area is to look it up online. Let’s say you are searching for a personal injury lawyers in Joliet, you could search online for personal injury lawyers Joliet.  This can fetch you a lot of relevant results.


Mishaps happen on a daily basis. Along with the physical harm, they also lead to emotional distress. One person’s negligence can result in the victim’s world turning upside down. It can be a very painful ordeal to deal with. But by being aware about the above aspects of personal injury law, you can strongly protect your legal rights.

About Us

Jeff Tomczak is an experienced personal injury attorney in Joliet at The Tomczak Law Group, Illinois. As the founder of the firm and a lawyer by profession, he has years of experience in handling the most serious and high-profile personal injury, accident and criminal cases since the last 25 years. He is dedicated in his work of representing victims and strives for availing significant compensation for his clients.

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