When do you need a personal injury attorney?
Have someone else's wrongful or negligent actions caused you or your family harm? Personal injuries in Maine can occur in many circumstances — from private property or your workplace, to a car accident or at a hospital — and whether the injury is physical or emotional, if it's not your fault you should consult a lawyer.
A skilled attorney will fight to recover the compensation you deserve for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages and property damage. It's vital that you seek the advice of qualified counsel immediately as there may be evidence that needs to be preserved, including photos of an accident scene.
Personal injury lawsuits can fall into several categories, such as automobile accidents, bicycle accidents and collisions, birth injury, construction accidents and injuries, dog bites, sexual abuse, slip and fall incidents, and wrongful death.
If you're unclear as to whether your injury is one where legal advice is recommended, some specific circumstances include:
- Your injury will require long-term treatment or surgery, or will result in long-term impairment
- You have had to miss a significant amount of work due to your injury
- You can no longer perform daily personal tasks yourself
- You have a head or brain injury
How can a lawyer help?
Any time you suffer an injury, the party at fault will often be represented by an insurance company. A personal injury attorney will act on your behalf by pursuing and obtaining full, fair monetary compensation. This often means untangling the complicated webs of insurance coverage disputes. Your attorney can evaluate your case, determine the best course of action and represent you in dealing with the insurance company, which could include having to deal with your insurance company, as well. Insurance adjusters will want to settle your claim for the least amount possible and may tell you that you don’t need an attorney.
Hiring a knowledgeable attorney to handle your case can also give you peace of mind since the attorney will handle many of the details of the case so you don’t have to.
What you should look for when hiring a personal injury attorney
There are several things that are important to look for when you're in need of an attorney because who you hire makes a huge difference in how your case is handled and what the final outcome will be. Personal injury laws vary by state and the individual situation, and having extensive knowledge of personal injury laws is imperative to receiving fair compensation. Some questions to ask are:
- How many cases of this type have they handled?
- What has their success rate been?
- How long have they been practicing?
- What level of compensation have they gotten their clients?
- Will the attorney be ready to take the case to trial if that is deemed the best approach?
- Will you be able to easily get in touch with your attorney when you need to?
If possible, sit down and discuss your case with prospective attorneys, face to face. Will you feel comfortable working with this person for what may be an extended period of time? Ask friends and associates what they know about prospective attorneys or if they have direct experience working with the attorney or law firm. Will you feel confident that they are committed to your case? You need to be able to trust that your attorney is advising you based on what is in your best interest.
The basics of personal injury law in Maine
Some of the more common types of personal injury cases are car accidents, medical negligence, premises liability, and slip and fall injuries but also included are assault claims, product liability claims and slander, among others.
When you file a suit against a person accused of causing your injury, the burden is upon you and your attorney to prove your claim. You must establish that there was negligence, and then be able to prove that the negligence caused your damages.
Maine law sets limits on the amount of time you have to file a personal injury claim. You should promptly consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to protect your claim. Contacting an attorney quickly also ensures that the incident is still fresh in the minds of those who might be called on to provide information. Some specifics of Maine personal injury law are shown below:
- Recoverable damages — Cost of household help; pain and suffering; property damage, such as your vehicle; past, current and future estimated medical expenses; loss of future earning ability; lost wages, including from time spent going to medical appointments or therapy; emotional distress including anxiety and depression.
- Contributory negligence — Maine is a modified comparative fault state. This means is that if you are 50 percent or more at fault for an accident, you can't collect damages for personal injury. If your percentage of fault is lower than 50 percent, you can collect damages. The exact amount you collect is impacted by the percentage of fault you are deemed to have. For example, a person who is 0 percent at fault will receive more compensation than an injured individual who is 30 percent at fault.
Why you should contact Lipman & Katz
At Lipman & Katz, we have several of the best personal injury attorneys in Maine. Our attorneys feel strongly that you deserve both understanding and aggressive representation no matter the injury suffered. Working as a team, we will get to know you and the details of your injury thoroughly so that we can confidently handle your case in the best way possible, whether in court or outside of, and obtain the maximum possible settlement or verdict on your behalf.
Our law firm has successfully handled many types of cases including:
- Automobile accidents
- Bicycle accidents and collisions
- Birth injury
- Brain injury
- Burn injuries
- Construction accidents and injuries
- Dog bites and dog-related injuries
- Motorcycle collisions
- Slip and fall
- Spinal cord injury
Sumner Lipman, the founding partner of the law firm, is regarded throughout the state as one of the top personal injury attorneys in Maine and he routinely handles cases on behalf of plaintiffs devastatingly injured in negligence cases.
In personal injury cases, David Lipman represents only injured people (not insurance companies), and has obtained substantial verdicts and settlements in hundreds of claims.
The practice of Roger Katz, with the firm since 1977, also includes plaintiff's representation.
Attorney Karen Boston has represented hundreds of people in difficult situations in her practice of personal injury and medical negligence.
If you or a family member has suffered an injury, contact us online using our free inquiry form or call us today at 1-800-660-3713 to discuss your legal options.