Tacoma Personal Injury Lawyer
Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Pierce County
Being injured in a serious accident can leave you feeling overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. How long will it take for your injuries to heal? How will you be able to afford your medical bills, especially while you are out of work due to your injuries? Where can you get your car repaired quickly so that you can get to your medical appointments, and what will you do while your car is in the shop?
At Cook Law Office, PLLC, we understand how an unexpected accident or injury can impact nearly every aspect of your life—and we believe the responsible parties should be held accountable. At our Tacoma office, we provide personalized legal services tailored to the unique needs of each individual client. We are ready to handle every detail of your case, from helping you find the best possible medical care to negotiating with the insurance company on your behalf, so that you can simply focus on what matters most: healing.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, contact Cook Law Office, PLLC online or call us at (602) 560-4756 to set up a free initial consultation today.
How to Tell If You Have a Case
Although some accidents are truly unavoidable, most result from the careless, negligent, or wrongful conduct of others. In such cases, victims generally have legal grounds to file personal injury claims against the at-fault parties and seek financial compensation for their damages.
To have grounds for a personal injury case, you typically need to be able to prove each of the following elements:
- Duty of Care: A person or party owes you a duty of care if they have a legal responsibility to act reasonably and take certain reasonable measures to prevent you from being harmed.
- Breach: A person or party breaches the duty of care if they fail to act reasonably and, instead, act negligently, recklessly, or wrongfully.
- Injury: You are considered “injured” if you suffer physical, emotional, or financial harm. Typically, emotional and financial harm result from physical bodily injury.
- Causation: If the cause of your injury was the other person or party’s breach of the duty of care, you likely have grounds for a personal injury case.
The best way to determine if you have grounds to file a personal injury claim or lawsuit is to meet with an experienced attorney who can review the specific facts of your situation. At Cook Law Office, PLLC, we offer completely free, zero-obligation consultations. During this initial meeting, our Tacoma personal injury lawyers can provide answers to your questions and inform you of your various legal rights and options, including whether we believe you have a case.
What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Personal Injury Claim?
The purpose of filing a personal injury claim is to recover for your damages. In the legal world, “damages” is the term used to describe a person’s economic and non-economic losses following an accident, injury, or the death of a loved one.
While every case is different, and the exact damages you could recover will depend on the specifics of your situation, many people are able to recover for the following:
- Emergency medical care costs
- Current and future medical expenses
- Medications, medical equipment, and other related costs
- Lost income/wages
- Pain and suffering
- Future lost earnings and lost earning ability
- Lost retirement earnings, pensions, and other benefits
- PTSD, anxiety, depression, and other mental health conditions
- Counseling services/therapy
- In-home assistance, including medical care
- Costs associated with childcare, house cleaning, etc.
In some cases, it may even be possible to recover what are known as “punitive,” or “exemplary,” damages. In contrast to the damages listed above, punitive damages are not meant to compensate the victim for his or her losses but, rather, to punish the defendant for egregious negligence, willful or wanton misconduct, or intentional wrongdoing. Punitive damages are relatively rare, but may be available in certain specific cases, such as those involving criminal activity.
A Team That Will Fight for You
Since 2012, our firm has been devoted to serving the needs of injured individuals and the families of those wrongfully killed throughout Washington State. Our Tacoma personal injury lawyers handle cases involving all types of motor vehicle accidents—including those involving cars, motorcycles, trucks, and rideshares—as well as other complex personal injury claims. We have what it takes to go up against the insurance company, and we are not afraid to take your case to court if that is what is needed to maximize your recovery.
Because we provide our legal services on a contingency fee basis, there are absolutely zero attorney fees unless/until we recover compensation for you. If we do not secure a settlement or verdict on your behalf, you do not pay!
Personal Injury FAQ
Is it worth it to hire a personal injury lawyer?
Yes, numerous studies have shown that people who work with personal injury lawyers receive better settlements than those who do not. When you work with an attorney, the insurance company knows that you are serious about your recovery, and it is much more likely to play fair. Additionally, having a personal injury lawyer on your side can significantly reduce the amount of stress you face, as your attorney will be able to handle the various legal details while you focus on recovering. You won’t have to worry about things like gathering evidence, submitting paperwork, and negotiating a fair settlement; instead, your legal team will be there to protect your rights and advocate for you every step of the way.
How long will it take to get a personal injury settlement?
Unfortunately, there is no set amount of time it takes to resolve a personal injury claim. Instead, various factors play a role in how long it takes to recover a settlement. These factors include things like the severity of your injuries and the duration of your medical treatment, how long it takes for you to reach maximum medical improvement, and how willing the insurance company is to settle, among others. Additionally, if the insurance company is not willing to settle your claim, you may need to proceed to litigation and trial, which can add time to your claim. That being said, the average amount of time it takes to settle a personal injury claim is several weeks to several months. However, it is not unusual for more complex cases to take years.
How long do I have to file a personal injury claim in Washington?
The statute of limitations on personal injury claims, or the deadline you have to file a lawsuit, is three years from the date of injury (or the date of death, if filing a wrongful death lawsuit). If you did not discover the injury right away, you may have three years from the date on which you discovered the injury or the date on which it was reasonably discoverable.
How much does a personal injury lawyer cost?
Personal injury lawyers collect fees (typically about 30 to 40%) from the total recovery obtained for a client. This means that you do not have to pay any upfront or out-of-pocket fees when you hire a personal injury lawyer, and if your lawyer does not recover a settlement or verdict for you, you do not pay anything at all. To learn more about our fee structures, please contact Cook Law Office, PLLC and set up a free initial consultation with one of our Tacoma personal injury attorneys.
To schedule a free initial case evaluation, call Cook Law Office, PLLC at (602) 560-4756 or fill out and submit an online contact form and a member of our team will get back to promptly.
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