If you have suffered a physical injury due to a workplace accident, car accident, or medical malpractice, you have a legal right to pursue financial compensation from the responsible party to cover medical bills and lost wages.

There are two common ways to pursue compensation if you suffered an injury in an accident. Below we review the difference between a personal injury claim and a personal injury lawsuit.

Personal injury Claims

A personal injury claim is typically the first method used by the injured party and their legal team to secure financial compensation for injuries sustained during an accident. During the personal injury claim process, a formal request for compensation will be submitted to an insurance company. Rather than involving the court, your attorney will attempt to negotiate a settlement privately with the responsible party’s insurance company.

Personal injury lawsuit

In many cases, filing a personal injury claim with the negligent party’s insurance company will afford you financial compensation in a timely manner. However, there are cases where your legal team may advise you to pursue a personal injury lawsuit.

If your attorney cannot reach an agreement with the responsible party’s insurance company, you may be advised to pursue a personal injury lawsuit. A personal injury lawsuit involves filing a civil lawsuit against the responsible party. Unlike the claims process, the lawsuit process involves litigating your case in court. During this process, you can still reach a settlement with the responsible party outside of court. However, it is important to note that filing a personal injury lawsuit may result in receiving less compensation than if you settled out of court.

Beginning a personal injury claim

To file a personal injury claim, first determine if an insurance policy will cover your injuries. For example, those injured in a car accident should determine whether the other driver has insurance. Take note of the negligent party’s name, along with their insurance carrier and policy information. After the accident, contact their insurance company and provide them with the negligent party’s name, policy number, as well as your own insurance information, and let them know that you were injured in an accident and wish to pursue a claim.

Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

If settlement negotiations during a personal injury claim stall, you can file a lawsuit to recoup the damages lost.

Once your personal injury attorney verifies you have a legitimate case, they will file a personal injury complaint – the official document that details what the plaintiff (injured party) claims the defendant (responsible party) did. Then your attorney will serve the defendant the complaint.

In New Jersey the statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident, while in New York the statute of limitations is three years from the date of the accident.

Consult a knowledgeable New York and New Jersey trial attorney

No two personal injury cases are the same. If you are injured in an accident, your first step should be to contact the experienced trial attorneys at Kreizer Law. Our experienced team of trial attorneys are committed to helping you restore your physical, emotional, and financial health.

For a free consultation, call 1‑(800)-4-JUSTICE®1-(800)-458-7842 or contact us online to begin evaluating your case.