Personal Injuries in Seattle: Your Guide

Have you or someone you care about been hurt due to someone else’s carelessness or recklessness? Maybe you slipped on the ice outside of a store or your neighbor’s dog bit your child. Perhaps your doctor or your pharmacist made a mistake with your diagnosis or your prescription. Or, maybe you were hurt in a car accident by a driver that was using his cell phone while he drove down the highway. Such injuries can have catastrophic results, not just for you but for the people that depend on your ability to go to work to be able to pay the bills and put food on the table.

Helping people who have suffered these types of injuries is the basis of personal injury (also called tort) law. These types of laws allow those who have been injured because of someone else’s actions or inaction to receive money to help make things right. Of course, if someone dies or suffers a permanent injury, no amount of money can fix that, but money can at least cover medical expenses and help the family stay in their home, go to college and do the things they had planned before the accident. That’s where a good accident lawyer in Seattle or Washington personal injury attorney can help.

What Qualifies as a Personal Injury in Seattle?

Personal injuries in a legal sense are defined as anything that causes a physical, emotional, or mental injury due to someone else’s actions or negligence. This includes a wide variety of injuries. It can include dog bites, slips and falls on icy sidewalks or wet store floors, car or motorcycle accident injuries, and injuries that result from medical malpractice, product liability, or workplace accidents. A skilled personal injury lawyer in Washington State can help you determine if your injury qualifies for a personal injury lawsuit.

What to Do After You’ve Suffered a Personal Injury?

The first and most important thing to do after you’ve been injured is to seek medical attention. If possible, it’s helpful if you document your injuries with your cell phone camera and jot down the details of the situation while it’s still fresh in your mind. Only after you’ve made sure everyone, including yourself, has received medical assistance, should you contact a lawyer.

Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims

Once you’ve received medical attention, it’s important that you speak with an attorney as soon as possible. You are only permitted to file a personal injury case in Washington State for three years from the date of the accident. In addition, memories fade over time, so it’s vital that we talk with witnesses and other parties involved with your case sooner rather than later.

Legal Process for Personal Injuries

The first thing you should do to pursue a personal injury case is to enlist the assistance of a skilled personal injury attorney who is familiar with your type of injury. While you can act as your own representative in court, an attorney is familiar with the procedure, the rules and the people who can make things happen with your case.

Personal injuries are tried in civil courts, not criminal courts. Your attorney can make sure you file in the right district court, one that will have jurisdiction over your case. Once all parties are notified of your filing, your lawyer and the lawyer for the other side will collect testimony and evidence to support or defend your claim. Most personal injury cases are settled with the defendant’s insurance company without ever having to go in front of a jury.

How an Attorney Can Help

The time immediately after you’ve been injured is no time to teach yourself the nuances of personal injury law. You need a skilled and experienced Seattle, Washington personal injury attorney to stand up for your rights and get you the compensation you need to pay your medical bills and support your family until you’re able to work again. 

At Craig Swapp & Associates, we have the know-how, experience, and contacts to make things happen quickly with the courts and to get you the settlement you deserve. To make an appointment with one of our attorneys for a free case evaluation, contact us today.

Written By: Ryan Swapp     Legal Review By: Craig Swapp