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What Is Personal Injury Law?

Personal injury law is a broad area of law that covers many different types of lawsuits. These claims involve injuries to people’s body, mind or emotions.

Most personal injury cases are based on negligence. Negligence is the failure to act with the level of care that a reasonable person would exercise under similar circumstances.


Negligence is one of the most common types of claims in personal injury cases. It involves the legal theory that someone failed to act with reasonable care, and therefore caused another person to be injured or harmed.

Negligent conduct covers both actions and omissions (failure to act). It includes any situation in which someone has a duty to take care of others and fails to do so, resulting in an accident or injury.

To prove negligence in a personal injury case, you must show that the other party breached their duty of care and that this breach was the cause of your injuries. This can be difficult to do, especially if you cannot prove causation.


Personal injury law enables people to recover for injuries, including physical, mental, reputational, and property damage caused by the actions of others. In most cases, the plaintiff seeks monetary damages, which can include medical bills and lost wages.

In order to win a personal injury lawsuit, the injured party (the plaintiff) must prove that the defendant was negligent and that this negligence caused their injuries, usually with the help of a personal injury attorney. Defendants usually put up a defense to protect their reputations and avoid being held liable for the victim’s harm.

Economic damages can be proven by documents that show the expenses incurred and financial losses suffered as a result of the accident and injuries, such as bills and receipts, hospitalization or surgery costs, ambulance service, and medical reports and expert opinions. These costs can include future expenses as well, such as lost wages or future care and rehabilitation.


The complaint is the first document that is filed in a lawsuit and it lets the court and the defendant know that you intend to seek a remedy. It is usually made up of multiple paragraphs, each numbered and containing an allegation to which the defendant must answer.

The factual allegations in a personal injury complaint tell the story of how you were injured and why you deserve compensation. However, they don’t have to be overly specific or numerous.

Rather, they should be concise and clear. A good personal injury attorney will advise you how many facts you need to include in order to make the case of your choosing.

The legal allegations in a personal injury case are often divided into counts, with each count representing a different theory of recovery under the law. For example, the most common count would be negligence. The other counts might be nuisance, violation of the local consumer protection laws or a variety of other theories of liability.


In a personal injury trial, a jury decides whether the defendant is liable for the plaintiff’s injuries. This is a crucial step in the process because it allows the jury to determine who is responsible and the amount of money that should be awarded for damages.

The case typically begins with jury selection and a judge hearing opening statements from both sides. The judge then reads a jury instruction, which sets out the legal standards that the jury will need to make decisions on the case.

The jury will then consider all of the evidence and determine whether a defendant is guilty. If the jury finds that a defendant is not guilty, they will return to the courtroom and decide how much money should be awarded to the plaintiff for damages. Damages generally include economic damages like medical expenses and lost wages, as well as noneconomic damages like pain and suffering. The jury can also award punitive damages for a defendant’s misconduct.