Personal injuries can affect every aspect of your life, from your financials to your personal enjoyment of life. If you suffered your injury due to another person’s negligent conduct, you might be able to seek financial compensation from them through a personal injury lawsuit.
If you can prove the four elements of negligence – duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages– you might recover for the harm you have sustained. These harms may be financial in nature, such as medical costs, and personal, such as the effects of pain and suffering on your life. You may even be able to recover if you were partially responsible for causing the accident or your injuries.
For a free initial case review, contact our offices at (732) 838-9769, and our personal injury lawyers at Legal Care New Jersey will put you on the path to the compensation you deserve.
Common Personal Injury Cases in Jersey City, NJ
Personal injury law is a broad field containing a multitude of possible injuries and cases. You would be hard-pressed to find a lawyer with experience with every personal injury claim. Our personal injury attorneys have experience with a variety of cases and can help you get compensation for your injuries.
Accidents on the road are among the most common personal injury claims. Our team has experience with accidents involving cars, trucks, and motorcycles. Although auto collisions are somewhat common, each case is unique. Your injuries and the nature of your claims will vary based on how the accident occurred. Traffic violations, road conditions, alcohol, and distracted driving are frequently cited factors in auto collision cases.
Bike crashes are common around Jersey City and other places in and around New York City. Traffic can be a nightmare in densely populated cities, and bikes are a popular alternative to cars and public transit. Unfortunately, negligent drivers have a bad habit of striking bike riders.
Bike accidents often happen when bike riders have to share the same traffic lanes as vehicles, but they can also happen when bike riders have their own bike lanes. You might have been hit by a car or crashed into a car’s open door in a dooring accident. The injuries from these accidents can be deadly serious, and negligent drivers should be made to pay up.
Another common kind of personal injury claim is for construction accidents. In large urban areas like Jersey City, construction is nearly constant. Perhaps you worked as a construction worker or contractor and were injured because of the property owner’s or someone else’s negligence. Alternatively, you might have been passing by a construction site when you were injured by falling debris or a negligent worker operating heavy machinery.
Slip and Falls
Although sometimes disregarded as more embarrassing than dangerous, slip and fall accidents can be quite severe. People injured in a slip and fall case might have soft tissue injuries like torn ligaments or nerve damage. They might also suffer bone fractures, back injuries, and brain injuries. If you fell from a great height, such as down a flight of stairs or over a high ledge, your injuries could be catastrophic.
Property owners may be held liable in slip and fall cases, as property owners are often responsible for the hazardous conditions that lead to these accidents. Our personal injury attorneys can help you sue the appropriate property owners for damages.
Wrongful death claims are unique from most other personal injuries because the injured party is no longer here to assert any legal claims. Instead, their family members may file the lawsuit. In a wrongful death lawsuit, surviving family members can claim damages for the losses they suffered because of their loved one’s death. They can also claim damages on behalf of the deceased person’s estate for damages they suffered before passing away. Wrongful death cases often involve significant damages, and our personal injury attorneys can help you get justice for your loved one.
Proving the Elements of Negligence for a Personal Injury in Jersey City, NJ
Personal injury lawsuits are available to victims who suffer harm as a result of some negligent, reckless, or intentional conduct on the part of someone else. By far, the most common conduct that creates liability is negligence. There are four key elements of a negligence claim in a New Jersey personal injury lawsuit: duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages.
Duty of Care
To establish liability, a victim must show that the defendant owed them a duty and what that duty was. Duties exist and are defined based on the relationship between the victim and the defendant. For instance, a doctor owes a patient a duty of care when they agree to treat them. Their duty will have different requirements than another legal duty (such as the one between a restaurant owner and a patron) because they are defined by what another reasonably prudent person in the same field as the defendant would have done in a similar situation.
Breach of Duty
Once you establish the existence and responsibilities of a legal duty, you must also show how the defendant failed to meet those responsibilities. This is referred to as a breach of duty. For example, drivers owe a duty to others on the road to drive responsibly and obey traffic laws, so if a driver exceeds the speed limit or swerves without using turn signals, they are in breach of this duty. Proving a breach of duty often requires plaintiffs to introduce expert witness testimony, which our personal injury lawyers can help obtain for our clients.
It is not enough to show that the defendant owed you a duty they violated. You must also show that the breach of duty was the cause of the accident that injured you. New Jersey uses the “but for” test for causation in civil suits for negligence. Essentially, if the injury would not have occurred “but for” the negligence, the negligence is found to be the cause of the injury.
A personal injury lawsuit aims to recover compensation in line with the harm you have sustained due to the defendant’s conduct. This is your chance to express how the defendant’s negligence has affected you and how you should be compensated for it.
If you cannot demonstrate that your injuries are compensable, you will not be able to recover in your lawsuit, so speak to your Jersey City personal injury attorney about how to prove the consequences of your accident.
Calculating Damages for a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Jersey City, NJ
Every personal injury lawsuit is different. The parties, the cause of injury, and the injuries themselves are all unique, making the prospect of estimating potential damages very difficult without additional information. To get a better picture of what your case is worth, contact one of our Jersey City personal injury lawyers today.
As a personal injury victim, you can claim damages for all the financial and personal consequences your injuries cause you. Damages will include compensation for the economic costs of your ordeal, such as medical expenses and lost wages while recuperating from your injuries.
They will also account for the less tangible consequences of a personal injury, such as pain and suffering. In certain cases, personal injury plaintiffs may pursue punitive damages, which are awarded when the defendant’s particularly heinous conduct deserves additional punishment.
Comparative Negligence for a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Jersey City, NJ
Not every personal injury is one-sided in terms of fault. New Jersey uses comparative negligence, which is how the courts account for situations where the victim is partially responsible for causing the accident or subsequent injuries. For instance, if the defendant negligently causes a car accident by driving through a stop sign, but the victim was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the collision, they may be comparatively negligent.
In these cases, New Jersey law requires that the court reduce the plaintiff’s recovery in an amount proportional to their part in causing their own harm. If the court determines that the plaintiff was 20% responsible for their own injuries, their recovery will be reduced to only 80% of their damages. If the plaintiff’s level of responsibility rises above 50%, they will be barred from any recovery at all.
What If I Live in Jersey City But Was Injured in NYC?
Since Jersey City is so close to New York City, many people live in Jersey City but commute to work every day in New York. As a result, it is not uncommon for Jersey City residents to be injured in New York. In such cases, the question is how to sue for damages when the claim involves two jurisdictions.
Our personal injury attorney can help you determine where to file your lawsuit. Generally, plaintiffs can file a personal injury lawsuit in the state where they were injured or where the defendant lives. You might still be able to file a lawsuit in New Jersey even though you were injured in New York if the person you wish to sue also lives in New Jersey.
For example, you might have been injured in a car accident during your morning commute to Manhattan or another New York City borough. If the driver who injured you also lived in New Jersey (perhaps they were also commuting to work), you can file your claims in a New Jersey Court.
The issue becomes more complicated when the defendant does not live in New York or New Jersey. For example, you might have been injured in New York City by a tourist visiting from Pennsylvania. In that case, you might have to file the lawsuit in New York because it is where the accident occurred. In that case, our personal injury attorneys can help refer you to a qualified New York lawyer for help.
The situation becomes more complicated still if you are suing a business, organization, or some other entity that is not based in either New York or New Jersey. In cases like this, plaintiffs might have to prove that the defendant has sufficient contacts with the forum state (i.e., the state where you are filing the case).
Steps Our Jersey City, NJ Personal Injury Lawyers Will Take to Help You
One of the first ways our personal injury attorneys will help you is by preparing and filing your initial complaint. All personal injury cases begin with a formal complaint filed with the correct court. The complaint is far more than a mere allegation against the defendant. It must include very specific details about all parties involved, how you were injured, why the defendant should be held liable, and the relief (i.e., compensation) you need.
Our attorneys can also help you assess your damages to get as much compensation as you are entitled to. If damages are incorrectly assessed or overlooked, your overall compensation might be less than you deserve.
Finally, we can work to develop effective legal strategies to use in the courtroom and settlement negotiations if necessary. Having facts and evidence is only half the battle; we have to persuade a jury of the validity of our evidence. Our attorneys can use effective strategies and tactics to strengthen your case and evidence while defending you against allegations from the defense.
Legal Care New Jersey Is Here for You After Your Jersey City Personal Injury
Call our personal injury attorneys at Legal Care New Jersey today at (732) 838-9769 for a free case review.