How Do You Start a Personal Injury Claim?

By Greg Kohn

When another party injures you, you can seek compensation for your injuries and losses by filing a personal injury claim. In most cases, the personal injury claim is filed with the insurance provider for the party responsible for your injury. Even though you do not need to hire a New Jersey personal injury attorney to file an injury claim, having the assistance of an experienced attorney has many benefits.

Why Should You Consult a Personal Injury Attorney Before Filing a Claim?

Before filing an injury claim, you need to determine who is at fault for your injury. In some cases, identifying the at-fault party can be simple. However, there are situations in which it may be complicated to be certain who is responsible for causing your injury. For example, in a multi-vehicle traffic accident, it may be difficult to identify which driver caused the initial crash. In some cases, more than one driver may be partially liable for your injuries. Likewise, if you are injured in a fall in a retail store, the owner of the store could be liable, but the company who leases the property may be ultimately liable for your damages.

It is crucial that you identify the correct parties and all the parties who might be liable for your damages. If you file your personal injury claim against the wrong party, you will not receive compensation for your claim. An attorney performs a comprehensive investigation to identify all parties who may be liable for the claim. Without the investigation, you could miss a crucial piece of evidence that points to the liable parties and helps prove fault.

Filing the Initial Claim with the Insurance Provider

Once you identify the correct parties, a claim is filed with the insurance providers for the parties. In some cases, you may need to notify the party directly that you intend to file a claim, including cases involving government entities. The insurance provider typically handles all matters related to the claim, including investigating the claim and negotiating a settlement for damages. The process of investigating and settling a personal injury claim could take many months. You never want to settle your claim before your doctor informs you that you have reached maximum medical improvement because you cannot know the value of your claim until that time. Therefore, the severity of your injuries can have a significant impact on the timeline of your claim.

However, you want to be very careful not to allow the deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit to expire. New Jersey’s Statute of limitation states the deadlines for filing lawsuits for personal injury against other parties. Because the deadline to file a lawsuit varies depending on the type of claim, the parties involved, and other factors, it is best to consult a New Jersey personal injury attorney to discuss your claim as soon as possible. Once the deadline to file a lawsuit passes, you lose your right to pursue a legal cause of action for damages and losses.

Contact a New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney for Help

Filing a personal injury claim can be complicated.  You must consider many factors that impact the claim, including legal, medical, and financial factors. A New Jersey personal injury attorney can help you by evaluating your case and providing the legal guidance, resources, and skills necessary to build a strong case against the parties who caused your injury. Schedule a consultation with our New Jersey personal injury lawyers today to discuss your options for filing an injury claim.

About the Author
Greg Kohn is a partner at Nagel Rice and specializes in complex civil litigation cases, including professional malpractice, personal injury, class actions, wrongful death, products liability, and commercial litigation.  He has extensive experience representing clients in both state and federal court. Greg has tried many jury trials to verdict and has recovered over $50 million in settlements and verdicts in all types of personal injury matters including automobile accidents, wrongful death cases, slip and falls, and other catastrophic injury cases. Greg also handles medical malpractice cases, involving misdiagnoses, wrongful birth, and delayed cancer diagnosis. If you have questions regarding this article, you can contact Greg here.