Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury Claims
If you are thinking about making a personal injury claim, you might have a few concerns and queries. To help you find the information you are looking for, we have explored some frequently asked questions below.
If you cannot find the answer to your question or there is something you do not understand, contact us at John Mickelson Law Corporation. One of our Vancouver personal injury lawyers will be happy to help.
What is a personal injury?
A personal injury is when someone suffers harm – either physical or psychological – as a result of another person’s negligence. A common example is when a motorist fails to drive responsibly, causing another driver, pedestrian or passenger to sustain an injury. If this happens to you and the accident was not your fault, you can make an ICBC claim for Part 7 benefits and a personal injury claim.
Personal injury can also be caused by medical negligence, defective products, dangerous premises and substandard care, amongst other things.
Who can make a personal injury claim?
Anyone who has been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence can make a personal injury claim. However, you must make a claim within the time limit, which is usually two years from the date of the injury. You must also be able to prove your claim. Namely, you must establish that the defendant acted negligently, and that this caused you to suffer injury. A lawyer can tell you if you are able to make a claim.
Can I make a personal injury claim for a family member?
Yes, you can make a claim on behalf of a family member if he/she died as a result of their injuries. You can also make a claim on behalf of a family member if he/she is under the age of 19 or lacks mental capacity. If none of these apply, the injured person must make a claim under their own name. Nevertheless, if you instruct a personal injury lawyer, all the work is done for you.
Is there a time limit?
Yes, personal injury claims are subject to a time limit. Typically, a claim must be brought within two years of the accident or injury. Normally the clock begins ticking on the date of the accident. Sometimes it is possible to start a claim after the two year time period has elapsed. This might happen if you were not aware of your injury, or you could not bring a claim for another compelling reason. If so, you have 15 years to bring a claim. Once the time limit has expired, you will not be able to make a personal injury claim.
It is also worth noting that people under the age of 19 have until their 21st birthday to make a claim. Also, time limits may not apply for the legally disabled.
How much personal injury compensation will I get?
It is difficult to say how much personal injury compensation you will get as it depends on the situation. You will be given compensation to reflect the pain and suffering you have experienced. This includes both your physical and emotional injuries. You can also recover all your past and future financial losses. So, if you have lost earnings due to time off work, you can recuperate this money.
If you are making an ICBC claim, you will be awarded personal injury compensation alongside your Part 7 benefits. If ICBC consider your injuries to be minor, you can only be awarded $5,500 for your pain and suffering.
How long does a personal injury claim take?
Each personal injury claim is different. Very straightforward cases could be resolved within a matter of months. For example, if you make a swift recovery and the defendant does not deny fault, the claim may settle quickly. More complicated cases can take years to conclude. This might happen if there are complex injuries, the defendant denies liability or there is a dispute regarding the compensation settlement.
Will I have to go to court?
The majority of personal injury claims settle without having to go to court. In fact, it is unusual for a personal injury claim to go all the way to a trial. Nevertheless, it is theoretically possible. We will only take a case to trial if we believe it stands an excellent chance of success. When this happens, we do everything for you, representing you throughout court proceedings.
Do I need a lawyer?
You are under no obligation to use a lawyer for an ICBC claim or any other kind of personal injury claim. Even so, it is highly recommended, especially in complex cases. This ensures that you get the correct amount of compensation. It also removes the burden from your shoulders. Once you settle a claim, you cannot ask for any more money. Therefore you must get it right the first time round.
Contact us now
To speak to a Vancouver personal injury lawyer about a potential claim, contact us at John Mickelson Law Corporation for a free consultation. Either fill in the free online enquiry form or call us on 604 684 0040.Go back to Blog