September 4, 2015
This is the sixth and final installment of an article series created by Calgary personal injury law firm Cuming & Gillespie to help residents of the Calgary area and Alberta at large better understand the steps in a typical personal injury case. All personal injury cases and lawsuits are unique, and the information here may not directly pertain to your case, however this guide will give you a general understanding of personal injury law and how it can affect you if you have been the victim of someone else's negligence.
If you've read Parts 1-5 of this article series, you know that a personal injury case goes through several major phases before it is resolved. Ideally, that resolution comes in the form of a settlement: an arrangement where the defendant (typically the insurance company or companies whose client was responsible for causing your injuries) agrees to pay the medical costs you've incurred, for any lost wages during your recovery period and an amount to cover future lost earnings due to reduced capabilities, and a fair amount for the pain and suffering you've endured as a result of your injuries, as well.
A somewhat less ideal resolution, though one that can still be of great benefit to injury victims, is through a personal injury trial. When a settlement can't be reached and a case goes to trial, the plaintiff (injury victim) and the defendant will argue their cases before a judge and, in some cases, a jury, who will determine what if any award should be paid to a plaintiff.
Not all cases end there, though. Both the plaintiff and the defendant can appeal the trial decision if they have reason to believe that the trier of fact incorrectly interpreted the law, law was not properly applied in the case or a finding of fact was made in error. Appeals can be complex and time-consuming, causing some personal injury cases to stretch on substantially, however there are some cases where an appeal may be necessary for the plaintiff to get the justice they deserve.
When a case has finally concluded—whether through a settlement, an initial trial, or after all appeal options have been exhausted—the only thing left is to collect on any award given to the plaintiff. In settlements, this tends to take place relatively quickly; awards granted in trials and/or following appeals can require more time and potentially some other paperwork to collect, however when insurance companies are involved they tend to be quick to comply with court orders.
Contact a Calgary Personal Injury Law Firm Today
If you or a family member has been seriously injured due to someone else's negligence, don't delay in getting the help you deserve. For help from Calgary's premier personal injury lawyers, contact Cuming & Gillespie today.
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