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St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer

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St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer

Did you suffer physical injuries, property damage, monetary losses, or other compensable damages due to someone else’s negligence? If so, you may be entitled to financial compensation from responsible parties.

The personal injury lawyers at Injury Lawyers Team are here to help you navigate the complexities of personal injury law and guide you through the financial recovery process. Our skilled attorneys will be with you at every step, from establishing liability to obtaining your compensation.

Contact our St. Louis law team today for a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team will remain private under an attorney-client relationship.

What is Personal Injury Law?

Personal injury law, also known as tort law, allows an injured person to take legal action against the party whose negligence was responsible for their injuries or losses.

In law, negligence is the failure to behave with the level of care a person with ordinary prudence would have applied under the same circumstances. Negligent conduct consists of actions but can also extend to omissions when there is a duty to act.

Common Types of Personal Injury Cases

Negligence can take many forms and occur in different settings. Hence, personal injury cases generally have significant variations. Our St. Louis personal injury lawyers handle all types of cases, including:

  • Car Accidents: Most motor vehicle and pedestrian accidents result from the negligence of one or more drivers. The person at fault (or with the most liability) may be responsible for the other party’s injuries and losses in a car accident.
  • Medical Malpractice: A medical professional who acts negligently, causing harm to a patient, may be held responsible in a medical malpractice case. Every medical professional must perform their duties according to the standards of care set by the health care community, and failure to do so may be considered negligence.
  • Product Liability: If a defective product injures you, you could hold the manufacturer or distributor responsible for your injuries. However, product liability excludes injuries caused by “unavoidably dangerous” products, such as industrial-strength bathroom cleaners and hair dye.
  • Slip and Fall Accidents: Someone else’s negligence could result in another person sustaining injuries in a slip and fall accident and may be held liable in a personal injury claim. For instance, a landlord who fails to fix a broken stair or a janitor who does not put up wet floor signs after mopping could be responsible for this type of accident.
  • Premises Liability: Premises liability is a legal concept in personal injury claims where the injury is caused by an unsafe condition on someone’s property. A property owner or non-owner tenant may be responsible if someone (who has permission to be on the property) is injured by a preventable hazard (e.g., a pool that is not fenced in).
  • Workplace Accidents: Employers owe their workers a safe working environment. Failure to meet this obligation could result in workplace injuries or deaths for which they are responsible. People injured at work can hold their employer accountable by filing a workers’ compensation claim.
  • Animal Attacks: If someone’s pet injures you, you could hold the owner responsible for failing to keep others safe from their animal. Certain exceptions apply, e.g., when you intentionally aggravated the animal until it attacked you.
  • Wrongful Death: Any death caused by the negligence of another may be considered wrongful death.

Different types of incidents require specific approaches. Your lawyer will guide you through the legal process during your free consultation.

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Types of Injuries in Personal Injury Claims

Personal injury accidents often lead to serious injuries. The following are the most common injuries our Missouri lawyers see in accident victims:

  • Head Injuries: Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) and other forms of head trauma are common in almost all types of accidents. Catastrophic injuries to the head or brain can lead to permanent brain damage, coma, and death.
  • Fractures: Broken bones frequently occur in accidents involving significant impacts, such as car and truck accidents.
  • Road Rash: Motorcyclists and bicyclists that get into accidents may suffer road rash, which is abrasions caused by the skin sliding across a hard surface, such as concrete.
  • Spinal Cord InjuriesSerious injuries to the spinal cord increase the risk of severe complications, such as chronic pain and paralysis.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries: Sprains and strains occur when a person stretches or tears their ligaments, muscles, or tendons.
  • Lacerations: Coming in contact with a sharp object during an accident can lead to cuts ranging from mild to severe.
  • Burns: Auto accidents can cause burns if the car catches fire. Similarly, workplace accidents also pose a risk of this injury if a chemical or electrical component combusts.
  • Crushing Injuries: These injuries can occur in car or truck accidents where a victim is crushed between two hard objects. Excessive pressure on the trapped body part can lead to muscle damage, nerve damage, and organ failure.
  • Internal Injuries: A serious injury to the organs (e.g., kidneys, spleen, liver) can cause organ failure, internal bleeding, and eventual death.
  • Amputations: Severe car crashes and workplace accidents can lead to instantaneous loss of limbs or severe injuries requiring amputation.

Grounds For Filing a Personal Injury Claim

In St. Louis, MO, there are three common grounds for filing a personal injury claim:

  • Negligence: Negligent acts (or inaction when there is a duty to act) are the most common basis for personal injury claims. Negligence is defined as an individual or group’s failure to act with a standard of care that a person with ordinary prudence would have acted under the same circumstances. Example: a driver that forgets to put their car in park, causing it to roll down the road and hit someone.
  • Strict Liability: Also known as “absolute liability” or “strict tort,” strict liability is a legal concept wherein the defendant is liable for damages regardless of negligence or intention. Product liability falls under this concept. Example: a manufacturer is responsible if their defective product injures a consumer even if they did not mean to cause harm.
  • Statutory Mandates: Personal injuries filed on the grounds of statutory mandates usually involve workers’ compensation disputes. Any worker that sustains an injury or illness, regardless of fault, suffered in the workplace or during employment may be entitled to workers’ compensation. Example: a worker that falls off scaffolding while working.
  • Intentional Wrong: Any action intended to cause serious injury or harm to others is considered an intentional wrong. It includes assault, battery, sexual abuse, psychological abuse, etc.

Not sure if you have a case? Your attorney will inform you if you have grounds to pursue damages during your free case evaluation.

Elements of a Personal Injury Claim

To file a legal claim against parties responsible for your damages, you must prove that:

  • The defendant owed a duty of care to you
  • The defendant breached this duty of care
  • The breach of duty caused the accident
  • The accident directly led to your injuries and other damages

Our personal injury lawyers will help ensure you can prove all these elements in your case.

Compensation for Injured Victims

If you were injured by someone else’s actions (or lack thereof), you deserve financial compensation for your harm. By filing a personal injury claim against at-fault parties, you could recover the following losses:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation for medical treatment costs, including hospitalization, medication, surgery, treatment, and anticipated future medical costs.
  • Disability: Compensation for disability-related damages if your accident leads to permanent disability. These damages may include loss of future earning capacity, mobility aid expenses, and rehabilitation.
  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation for physical and non-physical injuries, including physical pain, emotional distress, mental trauma, etc.
  • Lost Wages: Compensation for lost wages and income while recovering from your accident or caring for an injured loved one.
  • Loss of Quality of Life: Compensation for quality of life lost following the accident, possibly manifesting in reduced independence, loss of enjoyment in daily activities, accident-related mental illness, etc.
  • Disfigurement and Scarring: Compensation for the economic and non-economic losses caused by permanent scarring or disfigurement.
  • Property Damage: Compensation for personal property lost or damaged in the accident.
  • Wrongful DeathCompensation for death-related damages if your loved one dies, including funeral and burial costs, pre-death medical expenses, and grief.

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Our personal injury attorneys will estimate the potential value of your settlement during your free case evaluation. This estimation will help ensure you accept nothing less than what you deserve.

Reaching a Settlement

After filing a personal injury claim against the defendant, their insurance company may offer you a settlement. You can no longer sue for additional damages once you accept the payment.

Insurance companies usually don’t offer fair settlements to accident victims to protect their bottom line and their client’s interests. Therefore, your initial offer may be lower than what you deserve. You need an experienced personal injury lawyer to negotiate with the defendant’s insurer and help you obtain the maximum amount for your damages.

To avoid unknowingly accepting an unfair settlement, remember the following tips when dealing with insurance companies:

  • Do not accept the offer right away
  • Do not sign over any evidence or agree to recorded statements
  • Do not admit fault in the accident
  • Have your lawyer handle communications with the insurance company

Other Legal Options

Your attorney can help you file a St. Louis personal injury lawsuit if:

  • The defendant’s insurer refuses to make a fair offer
  • The defendant denies responsibility for the accident

If your case goes to civil court, a judge or jury will hear evidence from both sides and determine a verdict. Your personal injury attorney will serve as your legal representation throughout the process and help you prove why you deserve to be compensated.

Litigation can take anywhere from a few weeks to months. Unfortunately, not all people can afford to spend extended periods in court without compensation for their losses. If this is the case for you, your St. Louis personal injury lawyer could help you seek compensation through alternative dispute resolution methods, such as arbitration or mediation.

Our personal injury lawyers will discuss all your legal options during your free case evaluation.

How Long Will Your Case Take?

The average personal injury claim takes about six months to a year to settle. Lawsuits usually take longer than one year. These are averages so the length of your claim or suit will depend on your case’s complexities, the number of parties involved, and the cooperation of the defendants.

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How Much is Your Claim Worth?

Settlement values for personal injuries vary from case to case. Several factors may influence how much you could receive in compensation, such as:

  • The Type of Accident: Compensation amounts differ depending on the accident’s circumstances. For instance, some motorcycle accidents are worth more than car accidents because they involve more severe injuries.
  • The Severity and Extent of Your Injuries: Generally, the more severe and life-altering an injury is, the more it is worth. Injuries that cause scars may also be worth more, especially if the victim is young and the scars are apparent.
  • Your Ability to Go Back to Work: You may get paid more if it will take longer for you to go back to work. Similarly, your settlement will likely be higher if you can no longer return to work (or to a similar line of work).
  • Emotional Effects: The emotional distress and mental anguish the accident caused could affect how much you receive. Unfortunately, this can be difficult to prove without the help of a personal injury attorney.
  • Defendants: The defendant’s ability to pay won’t affect the value of your compensation. However, wealthy or corporate defendants usually face greater punitive damages, which may affect your claim if it includes punitive damages. Moreover, the quality of a defendant’s insurance may affect how much they can offer you in compensation.

Shared Liability 

Your role in the accident may also affect the value of your claim. If you somehow contributed to the accident, the court may adjust your compensation in proportion to your degree of fault.

Missouri follows the “comparative negligence” rule, in which the plaintiff may only collect damages in proportion to the defendant’s degree of fault. For instance, a driver fails to make a safe left turn and causes a car accident involving another driver. However, the other driver was speeding. Both parties may be at fault, but the driver who made the unsafe turn may hold most of the blame.

The court will adjust your compensation depending on your level of negligence contributing to the accident. If the court finds you 10% at fault, it will reduce your damages by 10%.

Unfortunately, shared fault cases can become complicated, especially in a car accident.

Relevant Evidence in a Personal Injury Claim

Collecting substantial evidence can help you recover maximum compensation for your losses. A personal injury lawyer can help you obtain relevant forms of proof, such as:

  • Photos of injuries
  • Documentation of the accident scene
  • Surveillance footage
  • Medical records
  • Psychological evaluations
  • Proof of lost income, such as previous pay stubs
  • Medical bills
  • Witness accounts from passersby, employees, or other accident victims
  • Expert testimony
  • Victim testimony
  • Police reports
  • Incident reports
  • Autopsy reports, in case of wrongful death

Begin collecting as many documents as you can while looking for a lawyer. Furthermore, record the ongoing effects of your accident, such as physical pain, emotional trauma, and stress. Do not throw away bills or invoices (repair costs, medical bills, etc.), and make copies for backup.

Possible Liable Parties

Potential defendants vary depending on the type of accident:

Car Accident

  • Other drivers
  • Pedestrians
  • Government agencies responsible for maintaining public roads
  • Property owners
  • Manufacturers of defective vehicles or car parts

Slip and Falls

  • Landlords
  • Business owners
  • Sanitation workers
  • General contractors
  • Other building occupants or customers

Medical Malpractice

  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Radiologists
  • Pharmacists
  • Nursing aides
  • Other healthcare professionals

Multiple parties may be at fault for your injuries. Your St. Louis personal injury lawyer will help you determine who should be held responsible by investigating your accident thoroughly.

Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Lawsuits

The statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits in St. Louis, MO, is five years from the date of the underlying incident or its discovery (Section 516.120 of the Revised Missouri Statutes).

After the accident, you must file your personal injury case as soon as possible. Otherwise, you may lose critical evidence. Severe delays can lead to missing the deadline, which would make the court dismiss your case if you file it outside the statute of limitations.

Allow our St. Louis personal injury attorneys to take over your case as soon as possible. This way, we can start investigating your accident immediately and determine the best way to recover compensation.

The Role of St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyers

Approaching a personal injury case without legal representation may hinder you from recovering fair compensation. Personal injury law is complex, and you will need an experienced personal injury lawyer to help you:

  • Investigate how and why the accident happened
  • Establish the liability of responsible parties
  • Determine the extent of your injuries and damages
  • Gather substantial evidence to support your claim
  • File a personal injury case
  • Negotiate with insurance companies
  • File a personal injury lawsuit, if necessary

Schedule a Free Consultation with Our St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys

No matter how careful you are, if someone acts recklessly, they can cause catastrophic injuries.

Fortunately, personal injury law allows accident victims to recover compensation from parties responsible for their injuries. If you were injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you could hold them accountable by filing a personal injury case.

The St. Louis personal injury lawyers at Injury Lawyers Team can serve as your expert legal representation and compassionate legal counsel on the road to financial recovery. With years of experience and unparalleled skill, our attorneys help countless personal injury victims recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, wrongful death, and other losses.

Contact our St. Louis law team today for a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team will remain private under an attorney-client relationship.

Our personal injury lawyers in St. Louis, MO, handle all accepted cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t have to pay for our legal services unless we win your case.