An accident involving personal injury can be scary. You may not understand your rights or know how to recover your medical costs, lost wages from missed time at work, or property damage expenses. We understand how devastating a bad accident can be, and we are committed to helping families and individuals get through tough times with honest, reliable, and beneficial legal counsel. If you need help after an accident, we are here for you.
What Is a “Personal Injury” Claim in Montana?
A personal injury claim is every victim’s right if someone else’s actions cause the accident. Montana’s civil justice system includes provisions permitting injured accident victims to seek financial restitution (damages) through a personal injury claim, in which the claimant (plaintiff) will have to prove the other party’s (defendant’s) negligence. A personal injury claim will have two basic issues:
- Liability: The question of liability is at the center of all personal injury claims. Liability refers to one’s legal responsibility for someone else’s damages. Someone may carry liability for a personal injury if he or she should have done something to prevent the injury. In other words, if the person was negligent in a way that caused or contributed to someone else’s injuries.
- Damages represent the injuries and losses the victim sustained in an accident because of the defendant’s negligence or breach of duty. Damages can refer to a range of losses, including property repairs, medical bills, personal injuries, emotional distress, lost wages, mental anguish, the death of a loved one, funeral/burial costs, loss of consortium, and lost enjoyment of life.
In a successful personal injury claim, the plaintiff will prove the defendant’s negligence and fault for the accident, after which the judge or jury will award the plaintiff a financial award to reimburse the total value of the plaintiff’s losses. This amount could be in the millions depending on the severity of the injuries. The skill of the lawyer involved in the personal injury claim can go a long way toward maximizing damage recovery in Billings.
What Constitutes Negligence in Montana?
Determining liability comes down to proving negligence. Negligence is a legal theory that refers to the failure to use reasonable care in doing something, resulting in another person’s injury or other damage. Negligence can take many shapes and forms, according to the situation. Anything that a reasonable and prudent person would or would not have done in a similar circumstance could constitute negligence in the state of Montana. Examples of negligence that often cause personal injury accidents include:
- Distracted or dangerous driving. Distracted and negligent drivers cause thousands of serious personal injuries and deaths in Montana every year. It is every driver’s legal duty to reasonably prevent injuries to others on the roadway. Failure to do so, causing a car accident, is negligence. Common examples include drunk driving, drowsy driving, texting and driving, speeding, and ignoring the right-of-way.
- Lack of property maintenance. Premises liability claims arise when a landowner negligently cares for the property, resulting in hazards such as slip-and-fall risks, property defects, malfunctioning equipment, dangerous staircases, loose animals, exposed wires, toxic substances, and uncovered swimming pools. The owner will be liable if his/her negligence caused the accident in question.
- Medical negligence (malpractice). Medical malpractice describes the failure of a health care practitioner or facility to adhere to the accepted standards of patient care in the medical industry. Inadequate patient care, misdiagnoses, medication errors, surgical mistakes, birth injuries, and malfunctioning medical equipment are all examples of health risks that should not exist under reasonable circumstances.
If you’re not sure whether someone else’s negligence played an integral role in your or a loved one’s recent accident and injuries, consult with our attorneys to find out. We’ll listen to your side of the story, review your medical records, and learn as much as we can about your case. Then, we’ll help you determine the defendant(s) we believe are liable for your damages. Next, we’ll file your personal injury claim against the negligent person or entity within Montana’s three-year statute of limitations. Your financial future could depend on the lawyer you choose as your representation.
Reliable Legal Resources.
The Billings personal injury attorneys at Ragain & Cook, P.C. specialize in protecting and aggressively pursuing the interests of individuals throughout Billings, Montana and surrounding areas in all types of personal injury cases including motor vehicle crashes, premises and product liability, nursing home abuse, medical malpractice, and wrongful death claims. With more than four decades of experience, Jim Ragain and Joe Cook know how to pursue fair compensation regardless of the circumstances of the incident.
Injured in an accident? Contact us today.
The key to obtaining the compensation you are legally entitled to is to enlist the aid of a Billings personal injury lawyer who is well-versed in investigating the facts, gathering critical evidence and documenting losses, whether medical or property damage, and who will truly be a strong ally in your corner.
If have been involved in a personal injury event, contact our top rated Billings personal injury law firm. You have nothing to lose and potentially thousands to gain, by way of jury verdict or settlement, when you speak to us during a free legal consultation. Get to know our competent and caring lead attorneys, hear a skilled professional’s understanding of your case and see our proven case results.
Call (406) 206-4831 or submit our online contact form, and we will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss your case.