A plaintiff’s goal in filing a wrongful death lawsuit or a personal injury claim is to provide the survivor, or the family members of a deceased loved one, compensation to ensure they are not forced into carrying the economic penalties of a defendant’s negligence.
This would include damages for lost income, medical costs, funeral and burial expenses, and non-economic damages such as loss of enjoyment of life, pain, and suffering, and emotional anguish. Exemplary damages, also referred to as punitive damages, may be possible depending on the circumstances of the case.
To win a personal injury case, the legal standard in Texas is “by a preponderance of the evidence.” The negligence case must then show five elements that existed in the case.
The five elements of negligence in Texas can be laid out in the following manner:
- Duty must exist – the defendant owed the plaintiff(s) a duty to do something or to not do something.
- Dereliction of duty – the defendant did not do something, or was ineffective in not doing something.
- Cause in fact – that the injury or injuries sustained by a plaintiff or plaintiffs would not have happened but for the negligence of the defendant.
- Direct or proximate cause – would a reasonable person think it is obvious that a particular action engaged in by the defendant could hurt someone.
- Damages – there must be an actual hardship experienced that can be compensated.
This area of the law can be confusing, and each case is different. This is why if you were involved in an accident, it is best to discuss the case with an experienced personal injury or wrongful death attorney. The circumstances of a case can make an enormous difference in the outcome.
Other Personal Injury FAQs:
- Are catastrophic injury cases different than personal injury lawsuits?
- Can I handle my personal injury claim without a lawyer?
- Can I still file a personal injury claim even if I was partially at fault?
- Can I wait to contact a personal injury lawyer?
- How do I know if I have a personal injury claim?
- How do you win a personal injury case in Texas?
- How does a victim of a catastrophic injury deal with insurance companies?
- How long does it take to get my case settled?
- How long does it take to get results in a catastrophic injury cases?
- I don’t have a lot of money after my accident how am I going to afford an attorney?
- I don’t have a lot of money and work at a low paying job. How can I possibly afford to hire a personal injury lawyer?
- I was in a bad car accident and sustained serious injuries. Can an attorney help me get compensation for my medical bills?
- If I file a personal injury claim, am I entitled to compensation for my injuries?
- My wife was killed by a drunk driver. Isn’t that a criminal matter? If so, why would I need a personal injury lawyer?
- Should I accept the settlement offer from the insurance company after my accident?
- Should I hire an experienced personal injury attorney after being involved in a serious accident?
- What am I supposed to do after being involved in an accident and I am badly injured?
- What are catastrophic injuries?
- What are special and general damages?
- What do comparative fault and the doctrine of proportionate responsibility mean?
- What do I do if the insurance company representative contacts me?
- What has to be proven in a personal injury case?
- What is a personal injury lawyer and how do I know if I need to hire one?
- What is a personal injury lawyer and why would I need one?
- What is a serious personal injury?
- What is the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury case in Texas?
- What kind of compensation am I eligible to receive by filing a personal injury claim?
- What kinds of accidents cause catastrophic injuries?
- What kinds of damages am I eligible for after an accident?
- What kinds of expenses could I claim after being injured in an accident?
- What types of personal injury claims are seen in Texas?
- When are injuries sustained in a car accident considered to be catastrophic?
- Why do I need a personal injury lawyer if the insurance company of the person who caused the accident I was in has offered me a settlement?
- Why would I need a personal injury lawyer for a minor accident and minor injuries?