One of the biggest worries someone filing a personal injury claim may have is if the defendant will deny everything. You might wonder what to do, and here's what a personal injury attorney will probably tell you.
Don't Buy Into One-on-One Conversations with Defendants
The first order of business is to not let someone talk you out of filing a claim before you've even given it enough thought. People can apply pressure, and potential plaintiffs might feel like they're doing the defendant a favor. Even if the other party insists up and down that they weren't responsible and can't be sued, take the time to meet with a personal injury lawyer. After you get a professional's opinion, you'll have a better idea of what to do next.
If the person pressures you to not seek a claim or offers to pay you on the spot, politely move on. You have every right to have counsel when you think about these issues.
Learn Who Their Insurer Is
Most successful injury claims end up being covered by some form of insurance. If the injury occurred at a store, for example, you can send your claim to the defendant's business liability insurance carrier. An incident at someone's house might go on their homeowner's or renter's insurance policy. If they're uninsured or self-insured, even that fact is still useful information you can pass along to a personal injury attorney.
Your lawyer will take the time to investigate what happened. If there were reports from police officers or first responders, for example, a personal injury lawyer will obtain these and review them. They will also visit the location of the incident to compare the reports.
Medical reports also factor into claims. Your attorney will review these and include them in any eventual claim.
Determining Who Is Liable
It's possible that the defendant was right about their liability, and that has to be considered. For example, an incident might have involved a landscaper on the defendant's property. Suppose a lawnmower sent a rock flying that struck you in the face. Most likely, the claim will end up going through the landscaping company's liability insurance.
Generally, liability for claims goes up the ladder of authority. If you were injured on a carnival ride, for example, the individual ride operator is almost certainly not going to be named as the defendant. Instead, the company that runs the carnival or whoever hired the company will be.
Contact a personal injury attorney to learn more.