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Terms To Know When Filing A Personal Injury Claim

One of the most difficult processes for anyone to go through is filing a personal injury claim. As you navigate this complex legal system, it’s important to become acquainted with some of the key terms that will be discussed along the way.

From understanding your rights and knowing what kind of damages may apply to common potential pitfalls in insurance claims, there are many aspects to consider during a personal injury case.

This blog post will provide an overview of essential terminology you need to be aware of when filing a personal injury claim for yourself or someone else. Understanding these legal terms is critical in navigating any legal dispute, and seeking legal advice from Philadelphia personal injury lawyer is always advised. So without further due, let’s start!

Arbitration: Arbitration is a process in which a neutral third party, known as an arbitrator, is appointed to make a binding decision in a dispute between two parties. Unlike in court, arbitration is private and confidential, and the parties have more control over the process.

The burden of proof: It is a legal principle used in civil and criminal cases to determine which party has the responsibility of presenting evidence to support their claims. The burden of proof lies with the party making the allegation or assertion, and they must provide sufficient evidence to convince the court or jury of their position.

Compensation:  It is the monetary amount awarded to the plaintiff in a personal injury claim to cover the damages they suffered. The compensation may cover expenses related to medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any other expenses incurred due to the injury.

Contingency Fee: An arrangement between the attorney and the plaintiff, where the attorney only recovers legal fees if the plaintiff wins the case. The fees are usually a percentage of the settlement amount.

Damages: These refer to the compensation that a plaintiff may receive in a legal suit or settlement for loss, harm, or injury suffered as a result of another’s wrongful conduct.

Defendant:  A defendant is a party who is being sued in a personal injury claim. The defendant may be an individual or a company that is alleged to have caused the injury.

Demand letter: A letter sent by the plaintiff’s attorney to the defendant or their insurance company, outlining the damages the plaintiff has suffered and the compensation they are seeking.

Force majeure: Force Majeure is a legal term referring to unforeseeable circumstances beyond human control that can disrupt contractual obligations. Events such as natural disasters, wars, strikes, and pandemics can trigger force majeure clauses in contracts, suspending or terminating agreements. Force majeure provides legal protection for parties facing unexpected or uncontrollable situations, but it is not a blanket exemption from fulfilling contractual obligations.

Liability: Legal responsibility for something, whether it is a debt, an obligation, or an act that results in injury or damage to someone else.

Loss of consortium: It is a claim for damages by a spouse or family member of an injured person who has been deprived of the injured person’s love, companionship, affection, and other forms of support.

Negligence: It is a legal concept that refers to a failure to exercise reasonable care or to act as a reasonably prudent person would have acted in similar circumstances.

Personal injury claim: A personal injury claim is a legal remedy sought by a person who has been injured due to the negligence or intentional act of another. The claim seeks compensation for damages incurred as a result of the injury.

Plaintiff: The plaintiff is the person who commences a personal injury claim in court.

The preponderance of the evidence:  Preponderance of evidence is a legal standard used to determine which party is more likely to be telling the truth in a personal injury case. The plaintiff must show that their version of events is more likely than not true.

Settlement: an agreement between the plaintiff and defendant to resolve a personal injury claim out of court. The settlement usually involves the defendant agreeing to pay a certain amount of compensation to the plaintiff to resolve the case.

Statute of limitations: It refers a legal time restrictions that limit the amount of time a plaintiff has to file a lawsuit against a defendant (2 years precisely). They vary depending on the type of case, jurisdiction, and the particular law that applies. Failure to comply with the statute of limitations can result in the dismissal of a case.

Tort: A tort is a civil wrong that causes someone else to suffer harm or loss, resulting in legal liability for the person who caused the harm. Personal injury claims are often brought under tort law.

Third-Party Litigation: It is a legal proceeding where a third-party files a lawsuit against a defendant on behalf of the plaintiff. The third party is usually an attorney or law firm that specializes in personal injury claims.

Wrongful death:  a legal claim brought by the surviving family members of a person who died as a result of someone else’s wrongful conduct.


Understanding the terms when filing a personal injury claim can be overwhelming, but it is an important process to ensure that you have adequate recourses to cover damages incurred. Moreover, finding a qualified attorney who is experienced in this field can help make the entire process easier. Knowing these concepts allows individuals to maintain their rights when filing a personal injury claim and secure fair recompense for incurred damages due to their particular situations.

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