Proving Liability in Personal Injury Cases
A successful personal injury lawsuit hinges on proving that a party is liable for the injured victim’s damages. This means a personal injury victim will have to show that the defendant is either strictly liable for their injuries or that the defendant acted negligently. To establish negligence, a victim will have to prove the following:
- The allegedly negligent party owed the victim a duty of care;
- The allegedly negligent party breached that duty of care;
- The breach caused the victim’s accident and injuries; and
- The victim suffered damages they can be compensated for.
In strict liability cases, an injured victim can recover compensation without having to prove the defendant was negligent.
Establishing liability in a personal injury case comes down to what kind of injury occurred and what caused it. And in some cases, both negligence and strict liability might apply.
Regardless of whether negligence or strict liability applies, it takes a great deal of effort to prepare a case and convince an insurance company, or a judge or jury, that the other party is liable. Working with a skilled Mississippi personal injury attorney will help you present a strong case. At Harris Law Firm, our experienced personal injury team can help you establish who is at fault for your injury and what type of liability applies so that you have the best chance possible of securing the compensation you deserve.
Damages in Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury lawsuit damages can include economic, noneconomic, and punitive damages. Economic damages are calculable monetary losses and are easy to prove with factual evidence, such as pay stubs and medical bills. Economic damages often include compensation for:
- Lost wages,
- Medical bills,
- Future medical treatments,
- Property damage, and
- Lost earning capacity.
Noneconomic damages are designed to compensate you for the psychological and emotional consequences of your injury. Because these types of losses differ from person to person, they are more difficult to quantify without the help of an experienced Mississippi personal injury attorney. Noneconomic damages often include compensation for things like pain, suffering, and emotional distress. Although rarely awarded, courts can also impose punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the defendant and make an example of them to deter others. In Mississippi, courts can award punitive damages when there is clear evidence that the defendant acted with actual malice or gross negligence, committed actual fraud, or showed willful, wanton, or reckless disregard for the safety of others.
Every personal injury case is different. And calculating all three types of damages can be challenging. But a skilled Mississippi personal injury lawyer at Harris Law Firm can help you establish your physical, emotional, and financial injuries and calculate a settlement amount that fairly compensates you for your damages.