What is a Personal Injury?
Being injured through no fault of your own can leave you unsure of where to turn. You may have serious injuries that require ongoing medical treatments and may be unable to work and make a living for yourself and your family. A personal injury occurs when one person suffers harm from an accident or injury caused by the negligence of another person or entity. When another person can be held legally responsible for the accident, the negligent party’s insurance company is responsible for paying the damages of the injured party.
These damages may include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. There are two basic outcomes to a personal injury claim—an informal settlement, which occurs in about 90 percent of all personal injury claims, or a formal lawsuit. Attorney Dianne Sawaya can guide you through the personal injury process, always working hard on your behalf for an equitable settlement.
Where Can I Turn for Help When I’ve Suffered a Personal Injury?
When you’ve been injured through no fault of your own, you may be unsure what steps you need to take to safeguard your health and your future. Speaking to an experienced Littleton personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya can truly make a difference for you and your loved ones. Our firm is smart, aggressive, and compassionate. We treat our clients with respect while working hard to maximize their settlement.
We have more than 200 positive Google Reviews and always provide a free, no-obligation consultation. If we don’t recover a settlement on your behalf, you pay us nothing. Just as important is the fact that we will help you get the medical treatment you need to heal. We understand this is a difficult time in your life and want to help you get through it in the best way possible.
About Injuries in Littleton, Colorado
Littleton is a home rule municipality located in Arapahoe, Douglas, and Jefferson counties, and is the county seat of Arapahoe County. As of 2020, the city population was almost 46,000. If you are a victim of a Littleton personal injury accident, caused by the negligence of another individual or entity, it could be extremely beneficial for you to contact an experienced Littleton, CO personal injury attorney from the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya.
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What Are the Most Common Types of Personal Injuries?
Any time an accident that is caused by the negligence of another person or entity leads to injuries, it is known as a personal injury. The most common type of personal injury is auto accident injuries. An auto accident is usually caused by one driver failing to act in a manner that would be considered safe by another reasonable person. Other common types of personal injuries include:
- Slip and fall accidents—A slip and fall accident can occur anywhere, but most often occurs in a grocery store, retail store, parking lot, around a swimming pool, in a stairwell, or any number of other places. Slip and fall accidents are most commonly caused by a spill, a broken step or handrail, uneven surfaces, torn carpeting, items in the walkway, or a recently mopped floor. An owner is obligated to identify slip and trip hazards, then take measures to rectify the situation, including placing hazard signs in areas where the hazard cannot be immediately addressed. Slip and fall accidents are known as premises liability claims. Aside from slip and fall accidents, other injuries sustained on another’s property due to negligence fall under premises liability claims.
- Wrongful death claims occur when a person has been injured in a personal injury, then later dies from the injuries. As an example, if a person is severely injured on a construction site, then later dies from those injuries, that individual’s family could be entitled to file a wrongful death claim.
- Product liability accidents—Consumers expect the products they purchase and use to be safe. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. When an individual is injured by a defectively manufactured or poorly designed item, they are entitled to seek compensation for their injuries. Another type of product liability claim stems from warning or labeling defects. This means the manufacturer of the product had a legal duty to warn consumers of a potential problem but did not do so.
Other types of personal injuries include boating accidents, animal and dog bites, spinal cord injuries, other catastrophic injuries, and asbestos exposure.
Will My Personal Injury Claim Go to Trial?
You may wonder whether your personal injury claim will go to court. While any case could end up in court, the vast majority (more than 95 percent) of all personal injury claims will settle outside of court. There are two methods available to collect damages from the negligent party following a personal injury. Your attorney can negotiate a settlement on your behalf, or if the insurer refuses to agree to a fair settlement, a lawsuit can be filed. Once a settlement or a jury decision is reached, you—the plaintiff—must relinquish all claims arising from the incident.
While a civil lawsuit may provide higher compensation for damages, a trial can also be risky. Juries can be difficult to gauge as well as unpredictable. When both parties disagree on liability, a settlement can be difficult to obtain, and a trial might be inevitable. When it comes to personal injury claims, a settlement is more likely than not. Insurance companies set aside money to pay out claims during the settlement process which is considered much more appealing than rolling the dice with a jury trial and incurring the legal fees that accompany a trial.
What’s Pain and Suffering—and How is It Calculated?
Pan and suffering following a personal injury can encompass actual physical pain resulting from the injuries, or mental and emotional pain and trauma resulting from the accident. Mental and emotional pain is a by-product of bodily injuries and can include things like mental anguish, emotional distress, humiliation, embarrassment, depression, sleep disturbances, loss of appetite, lack of energy, anxiety, loss of enjoyment of life, fear, and much more. Mental pain arises from having to deal with the physical pain and trauma of the accident and subsequent injuries. Severe mental pain and suffering can result in symptoms of PTSD.
There are no “set in stone” guidelines for juries when determining pain and suffering in a personal injury lawsuit. Judges generally just instruct juries to use good sense when determining pain and suffering by taking into consideration economic damages like medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses as well as the severity of the injuries. The value of a pain and suffering claim will also hinge on whether your attorney believes you will be a good, credible witness as well as:
- If your testimony regarding your injuries has been consistent
- Whether it might appear that you have exaggerated your pain and suffering claims
- If your medical records support your claims of pain and suffering
- Whether your diagnosis, injuries, and claims are reasonable and make sense to the jury
Non-economic damages often exceed economic damages and while juries are given wide discretion when calculating pain and suffering awards, Colorado caps the amount of non-economic damages.
How a Littleton, CO Personal Injury Attorney from the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya Can Help
Every personal injury is unique in some way. When you have a smart, aggressive personal injury attorney like Dianne Sawaya working with the insurance company, you can rest easy knowing Dianne will ensure the insurer pays you what you deserve. Insurance companies are well aware that when they try to lowball a client of Dianne’s, she and her team will not hesitate to take the personal injury claim to trial. The Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya are equally comfortable negotiating a settlement as they are litigating for you in front of a judge and jury. Contact an experienced Littleton, CO personal injury attorney from the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya.