Hickory, North Carolina, is a vibrant city near the Piedmont region of the state. The city has grown in recent years thanks to an influx of companies relocating there. As a result, the population has increased, and therefore, so have the number of accidents.
At The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor, we handle all personal injury cases. If you’ve been injured in an accident, we can help. We have years of experience helping people recover the compensation they deserve after their injuries. Contact us today for a free consultation.
Four Elements That Must Be True for a Hickory Personal Injury Claim
You should be able to prove the following four elements in a personal injury claim:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care
- The defendant breached that duty of care
- The defendant’s negligence caused your injuries
- You suffered damages as a result
The Responsible Party Owed You a Duty of Care
In order to prove that you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you must show that the other person owed you a duty of care. This means they were expected to act in a certain way, and their failure to do so caused your injuries.
For instance, drivers owe other motorists a duty of care to drive safely, so if a driver causes an accident that injures you due to their not driving safely, such as following too closely, they are negligent because they breached their duty to drive safely.
The Responsible Party Acted Negligently
To prove that someone else was negligent, you must show that they failed to meet the standard of care required by law. For example, if you’re in the hospital and a doctor leaves a sponge inside you after surgery, they negligently breached their duty of care. Or as in the example above, they followed you too closely and ran into the back of your car, their negligence breached the duty of care owed to you and other motorists.
Their Negligence Caused Your Injuries
Once you have established that the other person owed you a duty of care and acted negligently, you must show that their actions caused your injuries. Meaning if they had not acted negligently, your injuries would not have occurred.
For example, if the driver who hit you ran a red light because he was texting and slammed into your vehicle head-on causing you to suffer a concussion, his negligent behavior caused your injuries.
The Injury Resulted in Economic Damages
You must have incurred actual losses as a direct and proximate result of the liable party’s negligence. For example, if you suffered a broken leg in the accident and will need to miss work for several weeks, your lost wages are an actual loss resulting from the defendant’s negligence. Other examples of damages include:
- Medical bills
- Property repairs
- Alternative transportation
- Domestic help
- Pain and suffering
Evidence You Can Use to Prove Your Claim
You can use any evidence that supports your claim, including:
- Police reports
- Photos of the scene
- Witness testimony
- Medical records
- Repair estimates
- Photographs of your injuries
- Records of lost wages
- Pictures of damage to your personal property
Common Types of Personal Injury Cases in Hickory, NC
Many personal injury cases can be brought against an individual or company at fault for causing you harm or for their negligence. The most common type of cases involve:
- Auto accidents
- Slip and fall injuries at a store or business
- Medical malpractice
- Dog bites or other animal attacks
- Construction accidents
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Wrongful death
Personal Injury Case Statutes in Hickory, NC
Several state laws apply to personal injury claims. These laws can help define when you’re eligible to receive compensation and how much you might be able to receive.
For example, North Carolina has a statute of limitations on personal injury cases. This law requires that you either settle your claim or file a lawsuit to protect your claim within three years after it occurs. If you miss this deadline, you’ve missed your opportunity to recover anything from the defendant.
How Much Does it Cost to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Hickory, NC?
The cost of filing a legal claim will depend on several factors, including whether you file in Magistrate, District or Superior Court, how many experts will be needed to prove your case, how many depositions are needed and many other factors. An experienced legal team will be able to provide you with an estimate of the fees and expenses that may be incurred during the litigation process.
Contact the Hickory Personal Injury Lawyers at The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor Today
If you’ve been injured in an accident, the personal injury lawyers at The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor can help. We have over 25 years of experience helping victims in Hickory and surrounding areas recover compensation for their injuries. Please don’t wait too long to speak with us about your case; call a Hickory personal injury lawyer today or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.