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What Is the Meaning of Personal Injury?

On Behalf of Christian Ayers
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The term “personal injury” means any situation in which one party’s actions harm another party. As long as the incident results in actual harm or some measurable loss, the victim has the right to pursue compensation from the party who injured them. If you or a family member experienced any such incident, it is important to know the value of working with a Monroe personal injury attorney as you seek compensation for your damages.

Understanding North Carolina Personal Injury Law

The objective of a personal injury claim is to hold a defendant accountable for the harm they caused and for the plaintiff to recover compensation for their damages. Before the plaintiff can secure any type of compensation, however, they must prove the exact cause of their injury and prove how the defendant caused the injury. Personal injury cases can arise from motor vehicle accidents, slip and fall accidents, workplace accidents, intentional acts of violence, and more.

The plaintiff must be able to prove they suffered a loss to proceed with their claim. This means they need to prove that not only did the defendant act illegally or negligently but that their behavior also caused actual harm or some sort of measurable loss. Under the state’s personal injury statutes, the plaintiff in a personal injury case has the right to seek compensation for economic and non-economic damages.

What is the meaning of personal injury?

Compensation for a Personal Injury in Monroe

Economic damages are generally the most straightforward element of a personal injury case in the state. These include all the direct financial losses the plaintiff suffered because of the incident. For most personal injury plaintiffs, their economic damages are likely to include:

  • Property damage. If the defendant damaged or destroyed the plaintiff’s personal property with their actions, they are liable for repair or replacement of the damaged property.
  • Medical bills. When a personal injury case involves a physical injury, the defendant is liable for the full extent of the medical care the plaintiff needs to recover fully. This includes future medical treatment costs if they inflicted a serious injury.
  • Lost wages. When a plaintiff cannot work due to their injury, the defendant is liable for the wages lost during their recovery. If the defendant inflicted a permanently disabling injury, the plaintiff can also seek compensation for their lost future earning capacity.

A Monroe personal injury lawyer can help their client accurately calculate immediate and future economic damages they can claim from the defendant. It’s possible for a good attorney to uncover channels of recovery the plaintiff may have overlooked on their own, enhancing the plaintiff’s total case award significantly. In addition to economic losses, the defendant is also liable for the pain and suffering they inflicted on the plaintiff.

North Carolina law does not require a plaintiff to use a specific formula to calculate pain and suffering, nor is there a limit to how much they can claim from the defendant in most personal injury cases. If you suffered a serious injury because of the defendant’s actions, your pain and suffering compensation could eclipse the total of your claimed economic damages. Plaintiffs who sustain life-changing injuries are likely to recover substantial pain and suffering compensation.


Q: Can a Defendant Go to Jail for Causing a Personal Injury?

A: Yes, it is possible for a defendant to face criminal charges depending on how they caused a personal injury. Most of the personal injuries reported throughout the state happen from negligence, or failure to exercise reasonable care. However, some happen because of intentional and illegal actions. Defendants in these cases can face harsher criminal sentencing for causing harm and increased financial liability to victims due to the illegal nature of their actions.

Q: How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Claim?

A: You have a two-year statute of limitations to file a claim for most personal injury cases in the state. This time limit starts on the date your injury occurred, and if you do not file your claim within the statute of limitations, you lose the ability to claim compensation from the defendant. Two years may seem like sufficient time to file your case, but it is always advisable to contact a Monroe personal injury attorney as quickly as possible to ensure you meet the deadline.

Q: How Much Is My Personal Injury Claim Worth?

A: The worth of your personal injury claim depends on your injuries and damages. The defendant who injured you is liable for all the economic damages you suffered because of their actions, including immediate and future economic damages, such as medical expenses and future medical treatment costs for a severe injury. You also have the right to claim pain and suffering compensation, and there is no limit to how much you can claim in most personal injury cases.

Q: What Happens if I’m Partially Responsible for My Personal Injury?

A: If you are partly responsible for your personal injury, even slightly, it will prevent you from claiming compensation from the defendant. North Carolina enforces a contributory negligence rule, meaning any plaintiff who bears partial fault loses their ability to claim compensation from the defendant who injured them. If you have any concerns that you bear partial liability for your personal injury, it is vital to discuss the issue with an attorney as quickly as possible.

Q: How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Monroe Personal Injury Lawyer?

A: Hiring a Monroe personal injury lawyer will likely cost you nothing unless your attorney wins your case. Ayers, Whitlow & Dressler accepts personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you only pay a fee after we win your case, and your fee is a percentage of the compensation we secure for you. If we cannot obtain compensation, there is no fee at all. This billing policy is meant to ensure you have access to the counsel you need when you need it.

Ayers, Whitlow & Dressler has the experience you want on your side for any type of personal injury case in Monroe or surrounding communities. If you are ready to learn what our firm can do for your recovery, contact us today and schedule a free consultation with a Monroe personal injury attorney.