Each day thousands of people in our state suffer severe personal injuries. Those injuries are often the result of an accident or medical malpractice. You have a right to recover damages for your past lost wages, future lost wages, past medical bills, future medical bills, property (car) damages, and all related expenses. Additionally, California the law provides that you are entitled to money damages for the pain and suffering you have experienced in the past and will experienced in the future. If you or a loved one has been injured because of someone else's negligence, we are ready to help you.

- Attorney Moseley Collins

August 11, 2014

The Basics of Personal Injury Torts

The people who most often seek out their legal options by contacting an attorney are those who have been injured in a car accident, or by someone else’s negligence. In most of those cases it is the first time A may have seen online or through their own research.

One of the most confusing law terms for the newly legal immersed is tort. It is a commonly used legal term but most people do not know its true connotations. Essentially, a personal injury tort is a civil claim against another person for injuries caused unknowingly. There are several key points to keep in mind.

Injury or Harm

A tort is the basis of a law suit. The law had set forward a precedent saying what offences are legitimate cause for lawsuits. Pedestrians hit by cars, slip and fall accidents and a variety of car accidents are great examples of personal injury torts. If a tort is present, the victim can sue for damages.

Civil Action VS Criminal Action

A tort is civil action. When a victim takes the responsible party to court it is not a criminal court. No criminal charges can be filed. Certain circumstances can contain both civil and criminal charges. Consider a situation where a drunk driver hits another driver. A civil complaint can be filed and the driver can also be charged with D.U.I.

Three Areas of Tort Origin

Torts stem from three distinct areas; strict liability, intentional and negligent.

Strict liability- Sometimes it doesn’t matter if negligence has occurred or not. For instance, a company is always responsible for the safety of its products. If a consumer is harmed in any way by a product, the manufacturer is responsible.

Intentional- Intentional harm is done on purpose. If someone intentionally throws a rock through a neighbor’s car window, they are responsible for the damage. There is also a criminal charge involved here, if prosecutors deem so.

Negligent- A negligent act occurs when someone acts with recklessness and abandon without thought to other peoples safety.

All legal terminology is difficult to understand for the everyday Joe. Personal injury law seems even more difficult as it concerns the well-being of a loved one and often devastatingly high expenses. One simple step to take to make matters easier is to speak with a qualified and experience attorney like Moseley Collins.

August 5, 2014

Pecuniary Recovery May Still be Possible in Single Car Calamities

When people imagine horrible car accidents it is most often involving another car. Nightmarish flashes of drunk drivers and irresponsible big rig operators occur when talk of tragic car accidents comes up. Surprisingly, studies have shown that most fatalities occur in single car crashes. AAA Mid-Atlantic produced studies of 8,000 fatal crashes over a period of five years. More than half died in single car crashes.

Survivors of single car accidents, including families of fatal victims, are faced with monetary issues that are often insurmountable. Grief, sadness and mental anguish added to financial difficulties clouds the thought process considerably. Many victims in these cases wrongly assume they cannot seek monetary recompense for damages accrued in the accident. There are some instances when a victim can seek financial compensation even though there were no other drivers involved.

When a third party is responsible for a single car crash they can be held responsible for damages accrued. Negligent drivers taking part in unsafe driving practices do not fit into this category. Unsafe driving practices include drunk driving or driving impaired, speeding, tailgating and distracted driving among others.

Single car crashes often occur when roads are not adequately maintained and dangerous driving conditions are present. The design and architecture of roads can also be ill planned and dangerous. Defects in the road, such as blind curves, drop-offs without guardrails, missing or hidden road signs, and unsafe construction, are often responsible for single car accidents.

In situations where roadways are to blame, there may be a chance to recover some damages from the public entity responsible for the maintenance and care of the road. Past accidents in the same spot, length of time the damage has been present and any attempts to previously fix the problem are all factors in the determination of responsibility.

Lawyers for any public entity that might be held responsible will inevitably blame the accident on the victims driving. Doing so will not absolve them of any responsibility that may be present on their behalf. The negligence of each party will be investigated to determine responsibility.

While a car crash may only involve a single car, there are circumstances when other drivers inadvertently cause an accident. An example would be a driver beginning to change lanes without looking and then suddenly realize there is another driver approaching from behind. The rear driver may have to boldly swerve and end up in a roll-over or departure from the roadway. The driver who tried to switch lanes may not even be aware of the accident he caused.

If you were involved in a single car accident there may still be a way to recover any financial damages you have incurred. Contact the offices of Moseley Collins today to see if we are able to help in this stressful time.

July 29, 2014

Car Accidents Can Cause Hard to Prove Chronic Pain

Slip and fall and construction accidents can cause life altering pain. However, automobile accidents result in more instances of chronic physical pain. Car accident collisions inflict great trauma and blunt force upon the human body resulting in violent jolts. The body bounces brutally inside the vehicle and is slammed into the hard interior façade.

Chronic pain resulting from a car accident can egregiously affect a person’s quality of life. The most basic things most people take for granted can be affected by chronic pain. Victims of chronic pain also frequently experience problems with mental health, depression, anxiety and a wide range of emotional disorder. The chronic pain teamed with the other issues it brings with it change a person’s life immeasurably.

California car accidents often incur whiplash during an accident. When the head is suddenly thrown forward and back violently injury to the muscles, nerves, ligaments and vertebrae occur, known as whiplash, a common cause of chronic pain.

Whiplash and the chronic pain it causes is challenging to prove in an auto accident trial. Insurance carriers often claim whiplash claims are fake when in fact, they can cause debilitating pain in the neck, base of skull, shoulders and back.

Studies have shown at least 30% of whiplash sufferers experience pain related to the injury a year or more after the incident. Many other symptoms also accompany those of whiplash such as dizziness, lethargy, concentration issues, sleep issues, compromised memory, and blurry eyesight.

Whiplash most often occurs in one of two ways. If a vehicle is hit from behind with enough force the occupants head will violently jerk forward and back causing whiplash. Another way is if a vehicle forcefully hits a stationary object causing fervent movements in the neck and head.

Whiplash is especially detrimental because the symptoms often do not materialize immediately after the accident. This also lends itself to be questioned by insurance lawyers who try to prove the injury came from a later incident or the victim created it to gain money.

Many object preliminary scans after an accident cannot discern the presence of whiplash. Deep tissue injuries make muscles sore for months but when those heal and pain still remains it reveals a sign of a deeper malady like whiplash. An expert auto accident lawyer can assure the proper test are done to provide the necessary proof of injury.

To prove whiplash claims in an automobile crash trial takes an experienced and reliable lawyer. Investigations, test, interviews and documentation must be provided for the court. Moseley Collins has years of experience in car accident law and can help you in this stressful time. Call our office for a brief consultation on your problems and we will explain how we can help.

July 21, 2014

Can Cat Bites Be More Risky than Dog Bites?

Animal bites are always frightening. Dog bites are always in the news and can be devastating. Other animals can be responsible for dangerous bites and one that is often overlooked is the cat.

According to mayo Clinic research, while dog bites are more prevalent and can cause more physical damage, cat bites cause more serious and damaging infections that can result in hospitalization and lifelong effects. The study also showed that two thirds of cat bite victims require surgery to remove all infection from the wound.

Dog bites differ from cat bites in a number of ways. Dog bites occur most often in children while cat bites most often happen to middle aged women.

The reason cat bites are more dangerous than dog bites is a simple one. Cats do not carry more disease or germs or viruses in their mouths. The answer lies is their teeth. Cats have very sharp, long, tapered fangs that can go very deeply into a person’s skin very quickly. Infection can set in immediately.

One factor that aids in the infection is the fear factor. People are much more afraid of dogs than cats. When a dog bite occurs people are more prone to rush themselves to the emergency room or seek a doctor’s care. Cat bites seem innocuous. People who receive them often treat them at home and do not seek medical attention until the infection has progressed too far.

The location of the cat bite also plays a part in the infection onset. Cat bites directly over the wrist, joint areas or near a gland are especially susceptible to infection and hospitalization.

Once a bite occurs the victim should immediately rinse the wound. The flow of blood is scary but essential to removing some of the toxins from the body. After thoroughly rinsing the wound it should be bandaged. Medical attention should be sought out and then legal representation.

If the cat owner is insured you will receive a call from the insurance company. Make sure not to agree to any terms or payments. Find out if the cat has had all of its vaccinations and is in good health. If possible, find out if the cat has bitten anyone else.

Cat bites can cause hundreds or thousands of dollars in hospital bills and medical expenses. It changes the quality of life and inhibits normal life activities. There is reason to ask for damages and it is possible to receive them.

July 16, 2014

Common Causes of California Big Rig Freeway Accidents

California freeways are notorious for becoming overcrowded at certain times. The state is simply not able to keep up with the ever-growing need for more and wider freeways. Some of our highways and freeways are more heavily trafficked by big rigs than others. It doesn’t help when unscrupulous shipping and trucking companies overload the trailers to cut expenditures. Add to those issues the tired and overworked drivers pushing their trucks to the limit to make their schedules on time and it is no wonder California freeways are one of the country’s leaders in commercial trucking accidents.

Federal regulations and California law dictate all big rig drivers to operate under strict safety measures. Negligent drivers who do not adhere to the safety regulations cause freeway accidents and should be held responsible. Contact Moseley Collins today to discuss your options in a California freeway big rig accident. More and more freeway pileups containing an amalgam of passage cars and commercial trucks of various sizes are reported each month. Making matters worse, big rigs often follow each other closely on the freeway and when one loses control vehicles behind it have less time to react to the danger.

Big Rig Freeway Accident Factors

While the main factor in big rig freeway accidents in California is driver negligence, which is a broad and all-encompassing term. Negligent drivers can be commercial truck drivers or everyday passenger car drivers.

Breaking to quickly is a common mistake negligent driver’s make. When a big rig driver breaks to quickly a jackknife accident can occur. A jackknifing accident is when quick breaking of a big rig driver causes the trucks trailer to move to the side and slide around the truck like a jackknife. These types of accidents can turn deadly quickly and can involve many other vehicles on the road.
Inexperience drivers are often the cause of these and other California freeway big rig accidents. Drivers with too little road experience, low testing scores and excessive driving tickets do not have the ability to drive as well as experienced drivers. Many trucking companies do not provide adequate training before putting their drivers on the road.

Ill maintained big rigs are another cause of accidents on the freeway. Unprincipled truck owners push off doing repairs and conducting routine maintenance to save money. Faulty brakes, threadbare tires, worn shocks and any multitude of other problems will affect a trucks performance on the freeway.

Dangers of California Freeways

Driving at high speeds endangers everyone on the freeway. High speed accidents are often the most dangerous and life threatening on the freeway. Vehicle speeds on the freeway are upwards of 65 mph. Any accident is more dangerous at these speeds.

Big rigs themselves pose a danger on the freeways. Anytime of day or night, these huge monsters of the road can be seen driving along California highways delivering the goods that make our civilization hum. Without a road shoulder, these large vehicles can accidentally push smaller vehicles off the road. Regular roads have more space to pass and shoulders present to keep from crashing.

California freeways are dangerous places and should always be driven with caution. In some accidents, however, drivers can do nothing to stop it from occurring. If you have been involved in a California freeway big rig accident call today to see how Moseley Collins can help you.

April 29, 2014

Workman’s Compensation: How it Works


Workman’s compensation is a system put into place to pay injured workers to compensate medical bills due to injuries incurred on the job. That can also include anyone who gets an illness or becomes sick because of a work related issue.

The laws governing workman’s compensation vary slightly from state to state. However, there are a few instances in which most injured workers always receive compensation for their injuries. Most any injury that happens while the employee is at work is covered under the workman’s compensation law.

There are cases of injury related to work that will not be compensated. An example is an employee having an accident on the way to work. While it is true that commuting to work is an essential part of the job, nothing that happens during this commute can be covered by workman’s compensation.

Another example is accidents that happen at work while the employee is under the influence of some type of drug or alcohol. Even though the accident happened at work, if the required blood test shows the employee to have ingested drugs or alcohol no compensation claim can be made.

A truck driver unloading cargo, a waitress smashing her hand in the freezer door, and a factory worker having an accident on the production line are all examples of a proper worker’s compensation claim. The only thing that would prevent a victim from filing a claim would be the presence of drugs and alcohol.

Work related illnesses are harder to prove. With a work related injury, more often than not the injury was observed by many and obvious. Illnesses are not so obvious. These are most often referred to as occupational illnesses and must be proven to have been caused by the work environment. They most often occur in healthcare industries and hazard materials environments.

An example of a work related illness might be a healthcare worker who contracts a disease from the facility. Nurses can easily stab themselves with a blood filled syringe. Another example of this type could be those who have come in contact with too much radiation. These types of illnesses were obviously work related and viable as a workman’s compensation claim.

Mental illness is another factor in workman’s compensation. If a person suffers a mental breakdown or becomes otherwise mentally ill and the work environment is found to e the cause a valid workman’s compensation claim exists.

April 22, 2014

Pedestrians Hit By Cars: When to Settle With the Insurance Company


Pedestrians hit by automobiles often have the same question; should I just settle with the insurance company or is there a smarter option? While this may seem to be a simple question, the ramifications are tremendous. Unfortunately, insurance companies have built a sturdy business model by making their offers seem far more lucrative than they are. Choosing to settle with an insurance company can mean a decision to go into debt.

More often than not, the answer is to hire a personal injury attorney to represent your legal rights and pursue who is responsible for your injuries. A personal injury attorney has the experience to recognize the many and varied tricks insurance agents use to give accident victims lower settlements. Insurance agents can confuse the issues surrounding a pedestrian accident to the point where a victim will settle for a considerably lower amount than they should have.

Insurance companies don’t like to give settlements to pedestrians involved in accidents and may refuse. They use any excuse possible to infer the pedestrian was at fault. If the pedestrian was drinking, for instance, the insurance company will say he or she was drunk and caused the accident.

When they do decide to offer a settlement it may be offered in a condescending manner with phrases like “we just want to do the right thing” and “this generous offer” to imply that the victim is getting more than they deserve. Pretty sneaky, right?

An attorney will review any settlement deal the insurance agency draws up and make sure that it covers the costs of all medical bills, pain, suffering, any loss of wages, emotional distress and costs of rehabilitation. Some victims may also need to be reimbursed for loss of quality of life depending upon the circumstances of the accident.

Being hit by a car is a big deal. Insurance companies may not feel the same way but their job is to save money, not to help victims. Pedestrians hit by a vehicle can endure serious damage and even paralysis and death. These types of extensive injuries cost money to recover from and even lesser injuries can be extremely costly.

Settling with what the insurance agency offers is rarely enough to cover the entire cost of being hit by a car.

February 28, 2014

Common Causes of California Big Rig Accidents

Heavy shipping in and out of the bay gives San Francisco some of the heaviest trucking traffic in the state of California. This increased trucking traffic also increases the number of big rig accidents. Unfortunately, these types of accidents are commonplace in high trucking traffic areas like San Francisco. As commonplace as they can be, it’s a whole different story when you’re involved in one yourself.

There are five most common causes of big rig trucking accidents. Tired driving, aggressive driving, distracted driving, inexperienced drivers and failure to maintain vehicles are some of the most common reasons large trucks wreck.

Truck drivers are notorious for driving long hauls without the proper sleep. Trucking companies often slave drive their workers and demand they make these types of hauls but other drivers just take it upon themselves to employ these unsafe driving tactics. Perhaps they need the money or maybe some type of drug is involved. Whatever the reason, tired truck drivers cause accidents.

Federal trucking regulations are in place to prohibit this type of unsafe driving but it does till happen. The Hours of Service or HOS regulations require drivers to get the required amount of sleep to be safe on a long haul. Drivers may not drive more than 14 hours after a 10 hour break, according to these regulations. A driver also may not drive more than eight hours without taking at least a 30 minute break.

Aggressive truck drivers are a danger to everyone. These huge behemoths of the road can weigh over 80,000 pounds. Drivers of these mammoth vehicles are charged with their safety and the safety of those on the road alongside of them. So often drivers of these trucks forget their own power and drive too close to other cars, cut off traffic and speed, causing accidents with injury and even death.

Talking on the phone, testing, adjusting the radio or eating are all especially dangerous while driving a big rig. Large trucks have large blind spots and a distracted driver is more susceptible to fall victim to them. Distracted truck drivers rear end other drivers, run other vehicles off the road and cause detrimental accidents.

Inexperienced drivers are often an amalgam of all types of bad truck drivers. They do not know enough to realize the importance of all safety regulations and may feel its ok to disregard them. Some trucking companies may not provide adequate training to their new drivers before putting them on the road. Trucking companies are responsible for the training of their drivers.

Failure to maintain the vehicles also causes a huge crash ratio. Driving these large trucks with several blind spots is not easy. Keeping them on the road and in good condition is imperative.

January 22, 2014

Dog Bite Incidents At a Low in Sacramento

Dog bites are serious business. Even bites from small dogs can be harmful and even deadly. Besides the obvious damage, dog bites can cause diseases and permanent scarring, disfigurement and lifelong maladies. Seeking the aid of Moseley Collins immediately after a dog bite is imperative.

Dog bite statistics are on the decline in Sacramento and California in general, according to dogbites.org. Only five fatalities from a dog bite were reported in 2012, the latest statistics. Eight were reported in 2011. Two of the five in 2012 were pit bull related. The other three involved a German Shepherd, Rottweiler and a Husky. Four of the attacks involved children.

While dog bites are down, they cannot be totally prevented. There is always a chance a dog will bite. Animals, even fully domesticated, are unpredictable.

Not only are dog bites painful, cause scarring and disfigurement and even death, they can also spread disease. There are some maladies that can be spread through the saliva of a dog. While they are far more harmful to other dogs than humans, they can cause considerable discomfort.

Staph infections can be passed through dog saliva to a person. Once a dog bite breaks the skin, streptococcal and staphylococcal bacteria that live normally on the skin and is harmless, can enter the wound and make the host sick.

People with immunity problems can develop Capnocytophaga, lso called septicemia or blood poisoning. People with AIDS, diabetes or arthritis are especially susceptible.

All dogs, even healthy ones, have the bacteria called pasteurella in their saliva. Sometimes these bacteria will cause swelling, pain and inflammation in the bite region.

The most deadly of all diseases from a dog bite is rabies. Rabies is deadly for both the human and the dog. Once a dog is infected with rabies and bites a human, the human is infected. Rabies causes headache and fever in the early stages.

Flu-like symptoms and general weakness are the first signs of rabies which may not display themselves for months after a dog bite. The bite location will feel sore, itchy and prickly.

The progressing disease will cause extreme anxiety, confusion and agitation in the host. Infected persons eventually become hyperactive, foam at the mouth and develop an aversion to water. Hallucinations and insomnia begin to develop as well.

Paralysis and coma are the final stages of rabies in humans. The majority of infected individuals die of heart failure.

Treatment for a dog bite must be sought out immediately. Even a small, innocuous bite has the opportunity to wreak havoc on your body. Once medical treatment is sought for your bite it is important to seek out the help of Moseley Collins.

Mosely Collins is a Christian attorney with deep seated morals and values. His goal is to maintain his client’s legal rights and recover their rightful rewards. Call today for a free consultation. We will hear the details of your circumstances and let you know what we can achieve for you in a dog bite case. We service Sacramento and all surrounding areas of California.

January 15, 2014

CHP Winter Safety Driving Tips

With winter fast approaching there is no better time to take stock of the California Highway Patrols recommended winter driving safety tips. Preparedness is the first step to safety in the winter months when driving is more dangerous. The California Highway Patrol has issued several tips to aid drivers in these months.

When temperatures start to drop, take note of all aspects of your car.

Check the brakes and make sure the pads are in good working order. Check the brake fluid and make sure there is no air in the lines. Inspect the windshield wipers, heater and exhaust to make certain everything is in good working order.

Take precautions against freezing by having adequate amounts of antifreeze in the water. Special solvents can be added to the windshield wiper fluid and water reservoir to prevent icing and freezing.

Tires are important in the winter. The tread should not be worn or shiny and the air pressure should remain at the recommended amount for the vehicle type.

Always carry an emergency bag in the car. It should contain water, chains, de-icer or ice scraper, flashlight, nonperishable food items, warm clothing and blankets. It’s also a good idea to carry extra chain links.

An extra car key hidden on the outside of the car or in a pocket somewhere can be a lifesaver. Many motorists lock themselves out while putting on chains or scraping the windshield.

Be aware of time. Traveling in the mountains of California during the winter months is takes more time than in other months. Allow time for inclement weather and slower traffic.

It is important to keep your gas tank full during winter months. One never knows when an unexpected storm will turn up and keep motorists stranded on the road longer than they anticipated. Exits can be cut off and roads damaged to the point no traffic can go through.

Keep the windows clear. Never is this more important than when conditions outside the window are sketchy. If wind, sand, snow and rain are blowing around, a clean window is a must. Visibility is often an issue in the winter months. Don’t let a dirty windshield add to the problem.

Be ever mindful of your speed. Remember that speeds that are safe on summer roads are necessarily safe on winter’s roads. Ice, rain and snow can make roads unsafe.

Sudden lane changes or changes in direction are not safe in winter temperatures. Icy roads make sudden changes in direction virtually impossible. Skidding off the road becomes a very real possibility.

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) Road Conditions Hotline is always available for motorists to check the status of road conditions before they head out on the road. 1-800-427-ROAD (1-800-427-7623).

If you or a loved one has been involved in a auto accident in the Sacramento area, call the offices of Moseley Collins today for an honest and knowledgeable assessment of your case.

January 11, 2014

The Basics of a Slip and Fall

Slip and fall accidents are commonplace. Unfortunately, so are slip and fall injury cases. This is due to the high probability of longtime injury and pain factor involved with these dangerous and common accidents.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports over 17,000 people die because of slips and fall accidents every year. More than one million people suffer injuries from a slip and fall each year, some life-long. Slip and fall injuries can be excruciatingly painful and debilitating.

As the name implies, slip and fall accidents occur when someone trips, slips or falls for any reason. When injuries occur, the victim will often file a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages from the injury.

Even the simple act of walking can be dangerous in some environments. A torn piece of carpet, broken step, slippery pavement or crumbling concrete can turn simply walking into slipping and falling. There are several ways a person can obtain a slip and fall injury when just walking along.
When someone experiences a slip and fall because of the environment they are in it is often possible to win remuneration for the injuries in a court of law. If the environment is dangerous it is possible to recover damages for the harm suffered.

To win money to pay for the medical expenses and other damages of an accident, the victim must prove that someone is at fault in the accident. It is important to prove that if not for the negligence of another individual the injury would not have occurred.

It can be difficult to show the proof needed to prove that the environment was too unsafe for human activity. It must also be proven that the injured party could not have and did not anticipate the dangers before entering the property.

If the property owner knows about a defect on the property that could potentially cause harm and does not fix it, they can be found liable in court for a slip and fall on the property. All maintenance must be kept up to date. If a landlord fails to fix something on the property and it causes a tenant to be injured they may be held liable in a personal injury trial. On the rare occasion that someone intentionally causes a slip and fall, they are also held liable for any injury and expenses.

Determining if you’re eligible to recover money for injuries suffered as a result of a slip and fall is never a simple task. Only a good personal injury attorney in your area, such as Moseley Collins, is capable of evaluating your case and telling you what your legal options are.

January 4, 2014

Legal Stages of a Personal Injury Case

How it Begins

Contrary to what the average person assumes, a personal injury case begins the moment someone is injured in an accident. Injury cases may be settled immediately after the accident or could go onto a lengthy personal injury trial. In both instances, witness testimony and all other evidence of the injury is imperative regardless of how the case is settled. Witnesses and evidence should be gathered immediately following the accident to prevent people from forgetting what they saw or evidence being lost.

Consulting a Lawyer

If the personal injury case cannot be settled out of court and must be taken to trial, a lawyer must be consulted. The chances of success in a personal injury case without legal representation are low. An attorney must be chosen carefully.

During the initial consultation with a lawyer, you will explain the details of your case. The lawyer will listen to your case details, ask pertinent information and explain how they can help and your percentages of success. In the legal world this is appointment is called the intake.

During the intake the attorney considers several factors. The time that has passed since the accident took place, medical evidence of the injury, the existence of other evidence, availability of witnesses, and the ability of the negligent person or entity to compensate for the injury claim are all essential information to starting the legal case.

Other important issues to discuss include the costs that the trial may incur. An attorney may also decide to conduct short witness interviews before agreeing to take you on as a client. Whether the case can be resolved in litigation, mediation, arbitration or an alternate method may also be a decision factor.

In most cases, once a lawyer agrees to represent their client a letter of demand is sent to the negligent person or entity responsible for the personal injury. This step may be skipped, however, in lieu of initiating the legal process directly by filing a complaint.

Complaint and Reply

A personal injury lawsuit begins with the complaint which is filed by the injured party or their legal representative in the appropriate court. The injured person is known as the plaintiff. The plaintiff lists all allegations against the responsible party, called the defendant.

After the complaint is filed with the court the defendant is given a copy. The defendant is expected to reply to the complaint by filing what is called an answer. At this point litigation begins. The plaintiff is given a copy of the answer and the discovery process start.


During the discovery process of a personal injury trial information is exchanged between the plaintiff and the defendant. This process can last years, months or just days. Depositions are held and evidence and any disputes are revealed to each side of the case. It is at this time each person’s lawyer demands to see evidence, documents, photos, witness reports and anything that will brought as proof they were not responsible.


During the trial and judge hears the evidence in the case. Once all evidence has been revealed and a decision is made the judge decides how much responsibility to assign the defendant. The defendant may be responsible for 100% of the accident, or some lesser percent. The judge also decides how much compensation to assign the plaintiff.