Finding a skilled and experienced Las Vegas personal injury attorney can be difficult. Just as complicated – and likely confusing – is understanding whether you need a personal injury lawyer to begin with. Having a basic understanding of personal injury law, including knowing your rights and obligations under the law, is key to finding a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer whom you can trust. So, if you or someone you know has been injured in an accident in Las Vegas or anywhere else in Nevada, keep on reading to understand some of the basics of personal injury law to help you choose the right lawyer.
Personal Injury Basics
While there are several legal terms that are used across various areas of the law, below is the most common and basic personal injury law terminology:
Negligence: The basis of virtually every personal injury lawsuit, negligence is used to determine who was at fault for the accident that caused the injuries. This is critical because the party who is at fault is the party that pays. Simply put, negligence means a party had a legal duty to act or not act and the failure of doing so under the circumstances was the cause of the accident that resulted in harm.
Contingency: This refers to the manner in which the personal injury attorney will be paid. Most personal injury lawyers are paid out of the settlement funds for the case. This means that if no settlement is reached then, the attorney will not be paid his or her legal fees.
Liability insurance: This insurance coverage is to pay for the financial damages resulting from an accident or injury that is caused by the negligence of another party. Typically, an injured accident victim can file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company for monetary compensation.
Subpoena: This is a legal document that commands a person to appear in court to provide testimony regarding a lawsuit. Failure to comply with a subpoena can result in jail time.
Settlement: This is an agreement between the parties to a lawsuit that resolves the case. A settlement is a compromise of payment in exchange for permanent dismissal of the lawsuit. Of note, a settlement is not an admission of guilt on the part of either side.
Preponderance of the evidence: This is the degree of evidence a plaintiff must prove to win the case. Under this standard of proof, the evidence presented must be more convincing than the evidence from the opposing party. In short, the evidence presented by the plaintiff must “tip the scales” in his or her favor. This is a lower standard than what is used in criminal law, referred to as beyond a reasonable doubt.
Trusted Personal Injury Lawyers
Being involved in an accident in Las Vegas or anywhere else in Nevada due to the fault of another can be devastating. Do not try to handle this alone. Having a basic understanding of personal injury law can help you choose legal representation. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Parry & Pfau have successfully represented the injured across Nevada, and are ready to represent you. Contact us today for your initial case evaluation.
(image courtesy of James Kresser)