Indiana law provides recourse for you to seek restitution for damages if someone causes you injury. To do so, you must file a lawsuit, although many cases wind up settled out of court. As the plaintiff in a personal injury claim, you must convince the judge or jury to award you compensation for damages. You must demonstrate that four elements existed when the incident in question took place.
This type of litigation is often complex and highly stressful because of the surrounding circumstances, such as a motor vehicle collision, an accident in the workplace or even, perhaps, a violent crime. If your claim goes to court, you must listen to a re-telling of the events that occurred, which can cause additional emotional upset. One way to minimize courtroom stress is to ask an attorney to speak and act on your behalf, which enables you to become more of an observer rather than an active participant in the proceedings.
Here are the elements you must prove in court to win a personal injury case
The following list shows the four primary factors the court is looking for to determine whether to rule in a plaintiff’s favor in a personal injury case:
- You must be able to demonstrate that the defendant you have named in your claim is someone who owed you a duty of care at the time of the incident.
- Next, you must prove that the defendant failed to fulfill this duty — in other words, that his or her actions or omission of action constitutes negligence.
- If you establish that these two elements existed at the time of the incident, you must then provide evidence to show that the defendant’s negligence was a direct cause of the accident or incident that took place.
- Finally, you must prove to the court that the incident resulted in physical, emotional or economic damages.
If you are considering filing a personal injury claim, you must be prepared to produce a list of damages. If the court rules in your favor, the judge will assign a monetary value to the damages in the form of compensation that the defendant must pay.
Indiana laws regarding personal injury claims
Every state has its own personal injury laws and statutes. In Indiana, you typically have two years from the date of the incident in which to file a claim for person or property. It is always best to seek clarification, however, because there are often exceptions to such rules. The bottom line is that you should not have to be financially responsible for injuries that someone else caused.