When you or a loved one is seriously injured in an accident, your whole world is turned upside down. Suddenly life is filled with fear and stress. You may be facing a long hospital stay, mounting medical bills, time off work, and a great deal of uncertainty about your future. The situation is made even worse when your injury was caused by someone else’s carelessness or negligence. You don’t have to face your difficulties alone. Under Minnesota law, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Our skilled and experienced Lake Elmo personal injury lawyers can fight for your rights and hold the guilty parties accountable. While money can’t fix everything or replace a loved one who died in an accident, it can help you put the pieces of your life back together and provide comfort and resources for your family’s future needs.
Different Types of Injuries We See
Personal injury lawyers in Lake Elmo, MN, file legal claims for a variety of injuries.
Several types of injuries fall under the definition of a “personal injury” claim. Personal injury is a practice area in which victims seek financial damages for the harm they’ve suffered because of someone else’s negligence or recklessness. Some of these accidents and injuries include:
Car Accident, Truck Accident, or Motorcycle Accident
Getting injured at work is another common type of personal injury claim. Whether falling from scaffolding, getting crushed by machinery, or suffering chemical burns, these on-the-job injuries can have devastating consequences.
A wrongful death claim is a type of personal injury in which the victim died due to someone else’s negligence.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall injuries typically happen when a victim slips on a wet floor, uneven pavement, or cluttered aisle in a store, hotel, parking lot, amusement park, concert venue, or other public location. Falls often result in fractures, concussions, TBI, bleeding, and other injuries.
Defective products can result in burns, lacerations, choking, and other harm to consumers. Product manufacturers can be held legally liable for injuries due to defects in the products they make.
Traumatic brain injuries, severe concussions, and other types of head injuries can have severe, life-altering consequences. Injuries can include damage to brain cells, memory loss, cognitive impairment, loss of speech or hearing, reduced motor skills, and a wide variety of other damage.
Injuries from dog attacks also fall under the personal injury umbrella. Dog owners who fail to properly train or supervise their dogs can be held liable when their canines attack a person, causing injuries or death.
Whether your injuries are moderate or life-threatening, they have clearly interrupted your daily living, caused unanticipated expenses and setbacks, impaired your ability to earn an income, and reduced your quality of life. The legal system has ways of compensating you for all that you have lost.
Choosing the Best Lake Elmo Personal Injury Attorney
Skill, experience, and a track record of success make all the difference.
Choosing the right Lake Elmo personal injury lawyer is one of the most important decisions you will make. All attorneys are not created equal. Some have more experience, skill, and determination than others. Our Attorneys are among the best and the brightest. They are compassionate with clients and understand that many have been through traumatic experiences. At the same time, they are aggressive negotiators and fierce litigators. They take each case personally and are entirely focused on getting our clients the justice they deserve. We not afraid to go toe-to-toe with insurance companies to negotiate a favorable settlement or litigate a case in front of a judge and jury when necessary. We will not stop until we have achieved the best possible outcome for every client. To learn more about what our satisfied clients have to say, you can read these client testimonials.
Personal Injury FAQs
Personal injury attorneys in Lake Elmo, MN, answer frequent questions.
Clients often have similar questions about various aspects of a personal injury lawsuit. These questions can include queries about timing, definitions, dollar amounts, and costs. Following are some answers to frequently asked questions:
What does “personal injury” mean?
A personal injury claim is typically brought when a person suffers actual bodily or emotional harm caused by another party’s recklessness, negligence or malice. Bodily injury can be something like broken bones or something as severe as paralysis. To receive damages, a plaintiff must show that they suffered a permanent injury or disfigurement, or incurred costs or financial setbacks as a result of the defendant’s actions.
What is the average personal injury settlement amount?
Because every case is different, there is no “average” settlement that an injury victim could receive. Each case is heavily fact dependent. Generally, the more severe the injury, the higher the payout. Also, if multiple people are injured, if someone dies, or if there’s evidence of gross negligence where punitive damages are awarded, the settlement, verdict, or award can be higher.
Will I have to testify in court?
Typically most personal injury cases are settled out of court, long before they wind up being argued in front of a judge and jury. Therefore, injury victims often do not have to take the stand and testify. However, you may want to be prepared to testify if necessary. As a client, you will have the choice of whether to accept a settlement or move on to litigation. Your Lake Elmo personal injury attorney will advise you about your options.
Who is the defendant in a personal injury lawsuit?
There can be one or several defendants in a personal injury lawsuit. For example, in a truck accident case, potential defendants could include the other driver, their insurance company, the trucking company, and even the truck manufacturer if there’s evidence of a manufacturing defect. In a product liability case, the product manufacturer and, in some cases, the distributor could be defendants. In a slip and fall accident, the property owner – whether it be a retailer, hotel, amusement park, or concert venue – is typically the defendant. Even though in most cases an insurance company is backing the defendant, in some cases you can sue an insurance company directly and they are the defendant.
How long does a personal injury lawsuit take?
Each case is different, depending on how many witnesses need to be interviewed, the amount of evidence to be examined, the complexity of the laws involved, who is at fault, and the willingness of the defendant to negotiate. Often, how long the case takes is a direct result of how long it takes the victim to heal. It is always a good idea to wait to resolve your case until after you know exactly what the injuries are and how long and hard the recovery is. Because of this, cases can take a few months to a few years to reach a settlement or jury award. Settlements often happen faster than trials, but settling can result in less money. Our Lake Elmo personal injury lawyer will advise you about the potential timeframe for your case.
What is “pain and suffering” and how do you measure it?
Pain and suffering can be difficult to value. A person injured through someone else’s negligence is entitled to recover for:
- Emotional distress
What each of these is worth can be different based on the case. Some plaintiffs may have all of these and some may have only suffered on or two. We will work with doctors and in some cases mental health specialists to identify and treat pain and suffering issues. An attorney will ask a client to document activities they previously enjoyed that they can no longer participate in, and in some cases a plaintiff may want to keep a daily journal describing how they feel emotionally and what activities they can and cannot perform each day.
How much does it cost to hire a Lake Elmo personal injury lawyer?
The good news is that Tyroler Leonard Injury Law works on contingency, which means that we don’t get paid until you get paid. Our legal fees are paid as part of a settlement agreement or jury award. If for some reason your claim is not successful, then you owe us nothing.
Damages Injury Victims May Be Entitled To
If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to damages. Damages can be both economic and non-economic. They include:
- Medical and rehabilitation expenses (current and future)
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Emotional distress (including trauma, humiliation, and disfigurement).
In some instances, there can also be punitive damages in addition to the damages listed above. Punitive damages are awarded by a court when there is evidence of gross negligence by a defendant who knowingly or recklessly placed persons in danger or if the defendant had a history of safety violations. Punitive damages, as the name implies, are designed to punish a defendant and prevent any other would-be wrongdoers from being similarly negligent.
Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims in Minnesota
In most cases, the statute of limitations for a personal injury claim is six years in Minnesota. The 6-year statute of limitations for Minnesota personal injury lawsuits can be found at Minnesota Statutes section 541.05. There are a few scenarios in which the “clock” on the statute of limitations might be delayed. These include:
- If the injured person under is the age of 18, then the statute does not run until the later of 6 years or the person turns 19 years old.
- If the injured person is legally insane, then the clock won’t start running until the period of legal disability is over (mental competence is restored). However, this filing deadline won’t be extended beyond five (5) years; and once sanity is restored, the suit must be filed within one (1) year. (Minnesota Statutes section 541.15.)
Minnesota Shared-Fault Rules
Lake Elmo personal injury claims follow a “modified comparative negligence” rule.
Some states, including Minnesota, follow a rule known as modified comparative negligence. This means the law recognizes that in many situations, more than one person may be at fault for an accidental injury. The court or jury will determine the amount of fault that belongs to each party based on the facts in a case. As long as your share of the fault is 50% or less, you will be entitled to collect some amount of damages for your injury.
Let’s take a look at an example that illustrates this rule. Suppose you’re shopping in a grocery store and you slip and fall on a pool of water that has accumulated from the produce section. You didn’t see the water because you were busy looking at the produce. Eventually, it’s determined that you are 15% at fault for the accident, and the grocery store is 85% at fault. Let’s say the total damages for the accident are calculated to be $100,000. Under Minnesota’s comparative fault rule, 15% (the percentage of fault assigned to you) will be subtracted from that $100,000. This means you will collect 85% of the total, or $85,000.
How Do You Prove Negligence in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
In a personal injury lawsuit, your attorney will need to prove that the other party acted negligently when they caused the accident in which you were injured. A defendant can be a person, a business, an insurance company, a government entity, or any combination of these.
To prove negligence, your attorney will have to prove 4 elements in your lawsuit. These include:
The defendant owed the plaintiff a legal “duty of care” to ensure that an environment or location was safe.
A plaintiff must show that the defendant breached this duty by doing, or failing to do, something that a reasonable person would have done in a similar situation.
A plaintiff must show that the defendant’s actions, or inaction, caused the injuries to another person.
Damages means that there’s a monetary way of compensating a plaintiff for their injuries and property damage.
Contact Our Lake Elmo Personal Injury Lawyers Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation. This is especially true if you were injured due to someone else’s recklessness or negligence. Our skilled and experienced Lake Elmo personal injury attorney at Tyroler Injury Law has helped countless clients get the justice they deserve. You don’t have to endure this alone. To find out more about how we can help, call us for a free initial consultation at 651-259-1113.