The Dallas metropolitan area has grown by leaps and bounds over the past several decades, largely thanks to the area’s economic prosperity. At the same time, the risk of sustaining a personal injury as a result of a car accident, slip and fall, construction site accident, defective product, or medical malpractice has risen.
Fortunately for injury victims, they have a legal ally in Heygood, Orr & Pearson. Our Dallas personal injury attorneys have decades of experience handling a broad variety of client cases both in and out of the courtroom. We work closely with our clients to provide legal options that offer the best possible chance at obtaining the maximum compensation available under the law. Through our services, our personal injury clients and their families can reclaim the losses they have suffered as a result of someone else’s careless or intentional behavior.
If you or a close family member have been hurt in an incident or had someone tragically pass on, know that you have the legal right to pursue a personal injury claim or lawsuit in order to recover your losses. You can learn more about your available options for claiming compensation when you speak with one of our personal injury attorneys during a free consultation.
Schedule your free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced Dallas personal injury lawyer now when you call (214) 237-9001 or by contacting us online.
Heygood, Orr & Pearson has a winning history of handling personal injury cases that result from incidents, such as the following:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Wrongful death
- Birth injury
- Construction site accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Premises liability
- Nursing home abuse
- Defective products
Building Your Personal Injury Case in Dallas
Like many other states, Texas law provides legal remedies for those seriously injured as a result of another’s actions. Typically, a personal injury claim with a sound legal basis must have one of the following characteristics:
- Negligence: The victim was injured by the bad decisions or carelessness of another person, business, or legal entity.
- Intentional tort: The injury was caused when an individual or a business made a decision to deliberately cause harm to the victim.
- Strict liability: The law says that the defendant is liable for any harm their products, services, or actions cause, regardless of negligence.
Negligence claims are the most common type of personal injury claim. A car accident injury case, for instance, will typically be built upon the idea that the at-fault driver failed to act as a “reasonable person” would, which led to the accident and the injury. Or, a business could have failed to exercise “ordinary care” to maintain its entryway, causing a serious slip and fall accident.
Intentional torts relate to actions taken with the direct intent to cause harm, such as an armed robbery or a libelous publication.
Strict liability claims almost always involve products or premises that are legally required to be kept safe for the general public. The injury victim does not have to prove negligence or intent in these cases, just that he or she has an injury.
Damages You Can Claim for Your Personal Injury
The legal term “damages” refers to any losses you experience as a result of your personal injury. These can include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are financial losses, such as the money you spent on your emergency bills after a car crash that wasn’t your fault. Non-economic damages are undesirable effects of an injury that don’t directly relate to money spent, such as the pain and suffering you feel while you are healing.
A Dallas injury victim’s claim will, therefore, frequently include some or all of the following forms of compensation:
- Medical bills
- Expenses directly related to treatment
- Lost income
- Loss of domestic services the injured provided
- Long-term disability or disfigurement
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
Filing Your Claim Before the Statute of Limitations Expires
Many civil actions, including a lawsuit for a personal injury claim, have to be done within a certain time period after the relevant incident occurred. This time limit is called “the statute of limitations.”
The statute of limitations varies according to the place where the incident occurred and what type of claim is being filed. For most legal actions, such as a car accident injury claim, the injury victim has two years from the time the accident occurred to file his or her claim.
However, some injuries may not be noticed for weeks or even months after the event happened. For instance, someone could die of lung cancer, and the person’s spouse could realize that the lung cancer was related to asbestos exposure once autopsy samples are processed weeks later. Some medical malpractice injuries may not be noticed for years, for example, until another medical professional intervenes and realizes the earlier mistake. In these instances, the statute of limitations may be extended to begin at the time of the “discovery” of the injured condition.
Exceptions are rarely made for personal injury cases, though, so victims should begin weighing their legal options with a Dallas personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. If you miss your statute of limitations date, you could have little or no options available to pursue a claim.
Anyone involved in an injury incident, like a car accident, should also immediately seek medical treatment so that his or her condition can be diagnosed before the statute of limitations expires and also so the injury can be connected more directly with the incident.
How Common Is Personal Injury in Dallas?
People get hurt in Dallas every day. Some of the most common causes of personal injury in the city include:
- Car accidents: There were 31,950 car wrecks in Dallas in 2018
- Motorcycle accidents: There were 418 fatalities and injuries caused by motorcycle accidents throughout Texas in 2018
- Workplace injuries: There were 2.3 injuries and illnesses per 100 workers throughout Texas in 2017 — equaling thousands of cases
- Slips and falls: Slip and fall accident account for about 8 million emergency room visits throughout the country a year
- Medical malpractice: Medical malpractice is now the third-leading cause of death across the country
Wrongful Death Cases in Dallas
Nearly any cause of injury can also be a cause of wrongful death. Agencies, such as the US Consumer Products Safety Commission and the Food and Drug Administration, institute regulations to protect private citizens from harm caused by consumer products. Local governments create traffic and other safety laws to protect their residents. Medical boards create guidelines by which doctors and other medical professionals must practice.
When people and organizations fail to follow the rules and regulations set by these and other agencies, they may be held liable if their error results in the death of another person. Some of the most common causes of wrongful death include:
Car accidents are, by far, the most common cause of wrongful death. When a driver fails to follow the laws of the road, that person can cause a fatal wreck. In some instances, the manufacturer of the vehicle may be liable if the car suddenly suffers a mechanical failure caused by a defect, such as faulty brakes or an airbag that doesn’t deploy.
Semi-truck accidents are also a common cause of wrongful death cases. The massive trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, and when they collide with a 3,000-pound passenger vehicle, the results are often devastating. About one in every eight traffic deaths involves a semi-truck, and in these cases, the driver, the trucking company, and other parties may be held responsible.
We expect the products we buy to be safe. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. There are thousands of cases annually in which children and adults are wrongfully injured by the products they buy and use The design or construction of the product may be unsafe, or they may not have the proper warning labels on them. Even though unsafe products are usually recalled by the government or the manufacturing company, the ones that remain in use can cause fatal injury.
Toys and electronics are common examples of defective products, but they aren’t the only ones — and often, they aren’t the most dangerous. Defective medical devices, vehicles, heavy machinery, construction materials and other products can cause serious, if not fatal, injuries even when they are used properly.
Doctors and other medical professionals are held to a high standard when it comes to the treatment of patients. If a doctor treats a patient in a way that another reasonable doctor wouldn’t, and that treatment causes injury, the doctor can be sued for medical malpractice. When that malpractice leads to death, the doctor, hospital or other party may also be held responsible for wrongful death.
Some of the most common types of medical malpractice include failure to diagnose, misdiagnosis, prescription and anesthesia errors, surgical errors, and using defective medical equipment. When a patient is treated with defective medical equipment, the equipment manufacturer may also be held liable for any injury or death that occurs because of that equipment.
Since its founding in 1938, the Food and Drug Administration has approved about 1,500 drugs for consumer use. While most of these drugs are safe for ordinary use, some can have serious side effects. For instance, recent lawsuits have been filed against blood thinner manufacturers because of the patients’ inability to stop bleeding if they are injured while on the medicine.
One of the hottest topics in today’s world is the opioid epidemic, which started with prescription narcotics being deemed safe and non-addictive. Because of the prevalence and high usage of opioids and other dangerous prescription drugs, deaths due to overdose and other complications is at an all-time high. Manufacturers, physicians and even pharmacists could be held liable for these deaths.
There are many different industries that use dangerous chemicals, potentially exposing workers to deadly environments. For example, asbestos in some forms is still used in certain industries, and asbestos exposure is directly linked to mesothelioma. In addition, chemical plants, fracking companies, oil drilling companies, and construction companies can employ highly dangerous chemicals in the course of their work.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has specific guidelines in place regarding safety equipment that must be provided to workers in these industries. Unfortunately, this equipment may not be provided, or might not be effective enough. When chemical exposure leads to death, a variety of different parties could be held liable.
How a Dallas Personal Injury Lawyer from Heygood, Orr & Pearson Can Help Your Claim Succeed
At Heygood, Orr & Pearson, we approach every client case with the mindset that the case could proceed to a jury trial. This mentality ensures that we build the strongest case possible behind your injury claim, increasing the likelihood of receiving a fair settlement offer and decreasing the odds of your case being dismissed over a legal technicality.
Our attorneys have received numerous awards by professional associations, including:
- All three name partners have been selected by their peers to the Super Lawyers List (a Thomson Reuters publication), an honor given to only the top 5% of all attorneys in Texas, for several years in a row
- Our attorneys are Board Certified in Civil Trial Advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy
- All three name partners are Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
While you work with your Dallas personal injury attorney, the attorney will keep you continually informed of the state of your case and the legal options you have available. We will regularly advise you as to the best course of action to take to protect your financial and legal interests. We also negotiate with insurers and defendants on your behalf, meaning you don’t have to worry about getting strong-armed or deceived into compromising the integrity of your claim.
Most importantly, your personal injury case at Heygood, Orr & Pearson is handled on a strictly contingent basis. This means you do not pay anything for our services unless your claim results in a settlement or court award. There are no legal fees upfront, so there is no reason to put off talking to a lawyer who could bring you the financial recovery you so desperately need after your incident.
To talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer in Dallas for free, simply call (214) 237-9001 or contact us online today.
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