Not All Claims Result in a Favorable Outcome
Personal injury law allows an injured victim to pursue compensation for injuries sustained due to another party’s negligence. However, not all Colorado personal injury cases are created equal.
Although there is no guarantee that every injury lawsuit will result in a generous damages award, personal injury plaintiffs frequently have unreasonable expectations and major misconceptions about the strength of their case. Personal injury cases that fall flat often have various things in common, including:
Most personal injury lawsuits are built on the theory of negligence, meaning that the person responsible for the accident was negligent, and their irresponsible conduct caused another party to sustain an injury. However, Colorado has a modified comparative fault rule, which means that any damages you are eligible for will be decreased by the amount of your own relative fault. If your own fault is under 50 percent, you will still be eligible for compensation, but if your degree of fault is proven to be 50 percent or more, you probably won’t be able to collect anything.
The injury you suffered must have resulted in compensatory damages e.g. medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, etc. If your accident caused very minimal damages, you failed to seek medical treatment for your injuries, or you have a serious lack of documentation regarding your losses, there will be very little to base an award of damages upon. Credible sources of information like a copy of the accident report, medical records and billings, and payroll records help to create a strong narrative that will improve your prospects of receiving fair compensation for your injuries.
Failure to Mitigate
A personal injury plaintiff is required to minimize their damages. If they fail to do so, they risk losing the right to recover damages that could have been reasonably avoided had they acted in the same way that an ordinary, reasonable person would have acted in a similar situation. Some examples of failure to mitigate include:
- Failing to seek medical attention
- Choosing not to undergo a recommended medical procedure, including surgery
- Refusing to comply with medical advice provided to them
- Pursuing alternative treatment options such as holistic and homeopathic remedies as opposed to seeking more accepted medical treatment for their injuries.
According to the mitigation of damages rule, every personal injury plaintiff has an obligation to take reasonable steps to avoid further loss and to minimize the consequences of an injury.
Lack of Legal Representation
Many injured people are reluctant to hire a personal injury attorney because they want to avoid expensive legal fees; however, most personal injury attorneys accept cases on a contingency basis, meaning they will not get paid unless you win your case or it is settled out of court. Furthermore, a personal injury claim is an adversarial process that involves mountains of paperwork, a complicated court system, and a competitive negotiation process. So, unless you have previous experience dealing with insurance adjusters, civil procedure, and drafting and filing legal documents, it is best to hire an experienced lawyer.
To avoid the possibility that your personal injury case will go south, contact Colorado personal injury lawyer Dan Rosen for a free consultation to discuss your injuries and legal options.