What Makes a Personal Injury Claim?
Accident and injury victims often have a difficult time deciding how to move forward in the wake of a serious personal injury. This is not surprising, considering how a debilitating injury can impact every facet of a person’s life. Fortunately, the law allows the victims of negligent personal injuries to seek compensation from the responsible party.
Requirements for an Ohio Personal Injury Claim
In order to make a successful personal injury claim, your case must be able to demonstrate these facts:
- Negligence or carelessness of the defendant.
- The defendant caused you actual harm due to their negligence.
- Proof of recoverable damages.
- The case must be filed within the time limit of two years from the accident, as established by the Ohio statute of limitations.
What is the Process for Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
1. Consult with a Cleveland Personal Injury Attorney
Because personal injury cases will vary greatly from case to case, filing a case is a highly detailed and technical process. Not every case can win, so as a plaintiff, your first step should be to meet with an experienced personal injury attorney in Cleveland, Ohio to determine whether or not you have a solid case. At the Cochran Firm Cleveland, we offer FREE legal consultations to help you evaluate your case.
2. Filing a Personal Injury Complaint
The next step after evaluating your case is to file a complaint in civil court. Should you choose to hire one of our attorneys, we will organize and file this document on your behalf. The document will outline the circumstances of your accident and injury.
Once the complaint is filed with the court, our attorneys will serve the complaint against the defendant. In layman’s terms, this means they will be notified that you’re filing a claim and it will be recorded. They will then have a chance to file a response in court and hire their own attorney. Insurance is also typically involved in the discussions at this stage.
3. Discovery Period
The discovery period typically lasts for several months. During this step, we will establish the facts of your case through investigations, depositions and communication with the other side. Our attorneys will handle any necessary communications with the other side to ensure your case has the best chance of succeeding.
Towards the end of this phase, the defendant may motion for the judge to reject the case. However, judges typically allow cases to proceed to court.
4. Trial and Verdict
Once your case has reached this phase, you will have several days of court proceedings before the verdict is determined. At this phase, you case will most likely be settled. Remember, there is no guarantee, but our attorneys are committed to aggressively defending your rights with the highest standards of conduct.
In the event that your case succeeds, the judge will determine what type of damages you will be awarded. Usually these damages will be either compensatory damages, economic damages, non-economic damages or punitive damages.
5. Post Trial
After a verdict is reached, you or the defendant may appeal the decision. Appeals will extend court proceedings for months and possibly years. Not every case will face an appeals period. If the defendant is a larger organization, you may face a lengthy appeals process. No matter what the result our profession attorneys will fight by your side to help you receive compensation.