A personal injury lawyer assists individuals who need to be compensated for injury or damages caused by the hands of another. Injuries or damage can apply to bodily and financial harm, as well as property, rights, or reputation. These legal services are vital for those who present claims which assert that they have been injured (physically and psychologically or financially) as a result of the negligence of another person, company, government agency or any entity otherwise.
A personal injury lawyer assists with facilitating counselling, processing claims, and handling matters related to personal injury that include the following:
- motor vehicle and road accident claims,
- medical malpractice claims,
- medical negligence claims,
- slip and fall claims,
- train accident claims,
- aviation accident claims,
- dog bite and animal attack claims,
- product liability claims,
- lift and gate or door malfunction claims,
- police assault claims,
- claims against enforcement agencies,
- and wrongful arrest and detention claims.
Personal Injury Lawyer Case Types
Road Accident Claims
Personal injury lawyers can assist with claims of compensation from an injury or death of a breadwinner due to a motor vehicle accident. Such a claim will be made to the Road Accident Fund (RAF), which is a statutory body, and this type of claim is more commonly handled by a RAF lawyer. This type of claim can only be for bodily injuries, and not for property that sustained damaged in the accident.
A personal injury lawyer is also able to assist with and facilitate settlement negotiations, investigate and litigate in matters of transport accidents which relate to bodily injuries sustained while making use of public transport or facilities operated by public transport providers. These include instances of:
- Metrorail or other train accident claims
- PRASA train accident claims
- Any other form of assault/injury happening while on the train;
- Fall or push claims against public transport providers
- Aviation/aeroplane accident claims
Legal Medical Claims
Although personal injury lawyers can assist with medical malpractice claims, it is more common for these matters to be dealt with by a medical malpractice lawyer.
In this instance, the police include institutions and organisations such as the South African Police Service (SAPS) and any other law enforcement agencies such as the Hawks, NPA, Metro Police and any other policing agency.
In cases where unlawful and wrongful arrest or detention results in injury to the self, assets, or reputation, a personal injury lawyer can assist with:
- Police assault claims
- Wrongful arrest or detention claims
- Damage claims
- Malicious prosecution
- Medical and hospital expenses or loss of earnings as a result of law enforcement actions
- Pain and suffering damages
It is an animal owner's responsibility to ensure that their domestic pets are kept from harming others. Sometimes, however, due to recklessness, owners fail to avoid preventing harm and, as a result, an individual may be harmed by an animal. Claims can be lodged against animal owners for past and future medical expenses; general damages for pain and suffering; and loss of earnings or loss of earning capacity.
Personal injury lawyers investigate and litigate all aspects pertaining to personal injuries or losses that occur as a result of:
- Dog bites
- Any other animal attacks
Injuries or losses that occur at public locations, shopping centres etc. can be claimed through the legal processes and principles of public injury claims against the relevant person/s (human being or juristic persons). Individuals may make legal claims and file lawsuits for serious injuries as a result of:
- Slips and falls
- Dangerous areas, slippery surfaces, inadequate lighting, disrepair, holes and cracks
- Lift, gate and door malfunction
- Poorly fitted and maintained equipment
- Malfunctioning equipment
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.