Frequently Asked Questions
After suffering a serious injury caused by someone else, many people have a number of questions about their legal rights in this difficult situation. Unfortunately, it can be hard to find concise, accurate answers that can actually help you understand your options. For this reason, Patino Law Firm has created the following collection of frequently asked questions and their answers in order to help those struggling with the consequences of an injury to get the advice and assistance they need.
If your question isn’t answered here, or if you would like to speak with the attorney directly, contact our offices today by calling us.
Can I still pursue compensation if I was partly at fault for my injury?
Yes. In most cases, accidents that result in injury are not caused by a single person’s or group’s actions, but are rather the result of a combination of factors leading to the accident. In fact, injury victims are sometimes partly at fault for their accidents. However, unless the injury victim was more than 50% responsible for the cause of the accident, he or she is still entitled to pursue compensation from the others at fault. It is important to note, though, that any compensation awarded to the plaintiff will be proportionately reduced by his or her percentage of fault.
If you would like to learn more about whether you may be eligible for compensation following your accident, contact the lawyer of Patino Law Firm today.
Can I still sue if I just learned about my injury?
The statute of limitations, a time limit placed on claimants for filing personal injury lawsuits, doesn’t typically begin until a person has reasonably realized that they were injured. Known as the discovery rule, this rule allows people who have injuries that aren’t immediately apparent to still fight for fair compensation. For example, someone who developed neck pain months, if not years, after a car accident may still be entitled to sue from the date they first noticed the injury, not when it actually occurred.
If you have questions about your legal options after being injured in McAllen by someone else’s actions, our attorneys at Patino Law Firm, can help you find the information you’re looking for. To learn more about what to expect if you file an injury claim and how we can help, call us today.
Can I sue on someone else’s behalf?
The power to file a legal claim is usually reserved for select members of an injured individual’s immediate family. For example, in cases where a child is injured, parents have the right to sue on behalf of their children. Similarly, children, once past the age of majority, have the right to sue on behalf of their parents if their parents are incapacitated. Depending on circumstances, these legal powers may be extended to grandparents, grandchildren, and other relatives accordingly.
If you’re considering taking legal action after someone you love has been injured, but have questions about how to proceed, our legal team at Patino Law Firm can help you find the information you are looking for. To learn more about your rights in McAllen as the relative or care provider of someone who’s been injured, contact us today by calling today.
Can I sue the government if a government agency’s negligence injures me?
A person injured because of the government’s negligence is usually granted the right to pursue financial compensation through the legal system. However, the government may bar cases filed by active duty military service members and may not allow cases in which the injury was caused because of a worker’s negligence outside of the scope of their governmental duties. Additionally, lawsuits filed in these cases must work through the government’s claims process first, before moving to a court if the claimant isn’t satisfied with the result.
If a government worker’s negligent actions have led to your injuries, our legal team at Patino Law Firm, may be to help you file a claim for financial compensation. For a free consultation about your options in moving forward with a claim in McAllen, contact us today.
Do I really need an attorney?
Although claimants pursuing a personal injury claim aren’t legally obligated to hire an attorney to argue their case, it may be in their best interests to do so. To argue a successful case and obtain compensation, a claimant may need a close understanding of the law, evidence, expert testimony, and adequate resources to stay on top of necessary deadlines and claim-related requirements. A law firm can handle all of these concerns and provide a claimant with clear-cut advice about concerns associated with their case.
If you’re thinking about filing an injury claim in McAllen against the people or person responsible for causing you harm, our lawyer at Patino Law Firm, may be able to help you through this process. For a no-cost, no-obligation consultation, call today.
How is compensation paid to successful claimants?
Although many claimants have financial concerns that need to be met quickly, compensation may be provided according to the defendant’s abilities and choices. The defendant may either pay through the more uncommon lump sum method, in which the full amount is paid at once, or the much more common structured settlement method. Structured payments are provided over a set period of time, in which the defendant is responsible for paying an installment to the claimant in regular intervals.
If you’ve been injured and have been left with a significant financial burden as a result, you may have questions about what to expect when filing a personal injury claim in McAllen. Our legal team at Patino Law Firm, can help you find the information you’re looking for and help you understand your legal options for filing a claim when you call today.
How long will my case take?
There is no definite answer to a question about how long a personal injury lawsuit may take to resolve. Ultimately, it depends on the strength of the claim and the claimant’s willingness to settle with their defendant. If a claimant settles in the early stages, a lawsuit may be over in a matter of months. However, if a claimant wants to work through the courts and fight for full compensation for all of their injury-related expenses, this process may take more time to reach completion.
If you’re concerned about how your case may proceed if you decide to file an injury claim in McAllen against the party responsible for your injuries, the legal team at Patino Law Firm, can provide the answers to your questions and help you understand your options. To learn more about how our firm may be able to work for you in your personal injury lawsuit, get in touch by calling today.
How much compensation will I receive?
The amount of compensation a successful personal injury case will obtain for a victim depends entirely on the specific details of the case itself. For instance, the majority of damages won from a case are linked to the medical costs involved with that claimant’s injury. Additionally, if a claimant settles with the party responsible for their injuries, that settlement may provide less compensation when compared to successful cases taken through the full court process. Any claimant concerned about compensation may want to discuss these issues with an attorney.
If you have questions or concerns about how your case may proceed, an attorney from Patino Law Firm, can provide the answers and information you’re looking for. After being injured in McAllen by another party’s negligence, call today to learn more about your legal options.
If an insurance company requests my medical records, should I provide them?
An insurance company may request medical records from anyone injured in an accident who could file a claim for financial compensation. This request can be denied by an injured claimant. Usually, these requests are made so that insurance companies can get early access to information they may need to form a legal defense against a lawsuit. If an insurer makes this request, a claimant may want to discuss their options with a legal advisor.
If you’ve been injured because of someone else’s negligence in McAllen and have concerns about your legal options, a lawyer from Patino Law Firm, may be able to work with you through the process of filing a claim. For more information about your rights and options after an injury, get in touch today.
If several people or groups are responsible for my injuries, who should I sue for compensation?
A claimant injured because of the actions of multiple parties may actually be able to hold all of them responsible through legal action in a joint liability claim. The defendants may be sued in one claim in these joint cases. While this can make a claim more complex, due to the nature of pursuing compensation from a jointly liable group of defendants, it can also allow a claimant to pursue the full the amount of compensation they may be owed from defendants responsible for that injury.
If your injuries were caused by several people or groups, you should discuss your legal options and the complexities of filing such a claim with a lawyer from Patino Law Firm. We strive to help those injured in McAllen by the negligence of others to get the compensation they need, even when multiple parties caused their injuries.
Is misdiagnosis considered medical malpractice in all cases?
Not in all cases. Medical malpractice requires a physician to make a mistake that would be outside the normal standards of practice. For example, a close misdiagnosis made on a judgment call after all standard tests were ordered may not necessarily unreasonably deviate from standard medical practices. If, however, the doctor made an egregious mistake during diagnosis or didn’t follow the proper protocol when diagnosing a patient, then that may be considered malpractice and entitle the patient to take additional legal actions for compensation.
If you or someone you love has been injured because of a doctor’s thoughtlessness in providing a diagnosis, our lawyer at Patino Law Firm, can help you understand your legal options. For more information about filing a medical malpractice claim in McAllen, contact us.
I’ve been offered a settlement. Should I accept it?
A defendant can offer to “settle” with a claimant at almost any point after an injury occurs. Even before the claimant officially files a personal injury claim, he or she may be offered some sort of repayment for the incident. Depending on the amount of compensation offered in the settlement and how quickly the claimant wants his or her lawsuit to proceed, the individual may want to think carefully about whether he or she should accept the settlement.
If you’ve been offered a settlement after an injury caused by medical malpractice, product liability, or another such accident, we can help you determine what your next steps should be. To discuss your options in further detail with an experienced legal advisor in McAllen, contact a lawyer from Patino Law Firm today.
What are punitive damages?
When a person is injured because of exceedingly careless behavior or malicious recklessness, he or she may be entitled to receive additional compensation assigned by the court that is unrelated to the plaintiff’s medical bills, lost wages, and other compensatory damages suffered. This additional compensation, known as “punitive damages,” is given only under certain circumstances to claimants who have been drastically wronged by the defendant, such as in speeding or reckless driving accidents. This is the court’s way of punishing the defendant above and beyond the compensatory damages associated with the incident.
If you’ve been injured because of someone else’s negligent or reckless actions, you may be entitled to pursue compensation for these injuries. Before filing a personal injury claim, you may have several questions about this legal process. To find the information you’re looking for in McAllen, contact a lawyer from Patino Law Firm.
What counts as “negligence?”
“Negligence” is a legal term that applies when a person owes someone else a duty, fails to perform that duty, and causes an injury as a result of that failure. Negligence can take several different forms, ranging from car accidents to premises liability. To pursue compensation for negligence, a claimant will have to prove that the defendant had an obligation to keep him or her safe or reasonably free from harm, failed to do so, and that this failure directly contributed to the plaintiff’s injury.
If you’ve sustained an injury due to someone else’s careless behavior and are considering legal action, we may be able to help you find the legal information and guidance you’re looking for. For more information about filing a personal injury claim in McAllen, contact an attorney from Patino Law Firm.
What is informed consent?
“Informed consent” is the legal term for the ability of a patient to provide his or her agreement to undergo medical care with a fully informed understanding of the risks, benefits, alternatives, and other such information regarding the procedure. When a doctor or other medical professional fails to secure a patient’s informed consent before pursuing treatment, he or she may be held liable for any negative consequences.
If you believe that you were not fully informed regarding a procedure before your doctor treated you, you may be entitled to financial compensation. To learn more about informed consent, please contact Patino Law Firm, today by calling our offices to speak with an experienced attorney.
What is medical malpractice?
When a patient’s health deteriorates or a medical procedure goes wrong, it does not always mean it is the result of medical malpractice. Instead, malpractice specifically occurs when a doctor’s mistake is significant enough that they step outside the bounds of the standards of practice for medical practitioners. The standards of practice are agreed upon professional standards that all doctors and medical professionals are expected to perform and adhere to. This means that a doctor’s error must be due to unreasonable judgment or such severe professional missteps that other doctors would likely not have made the same error.
It can be hard to know when you were the victim of medical malpractice. However, at Patino Law Firm, our lawyer can help you evaluate your situation and know whether you should seek compensation from the irresponsible medical professional who caused you harm.
What is the statute of limitations?
The “statute of limitations” is a legal term that refers to the amount of time a person or party has to take legal action against someone else. In cases involving personal injury, the statute of limitations usually begins as soon as an individual suffers an injury or should reasonable have discovered that he or she was injured. After the statute of limitations has passed, it is typically no longer possible for an injury victim to pursue compensation.
If you have been hurt in a personal injury accident, it is important to discuss your situation with an attorney as soon as possible so that you do not lose the chance to seek compensation. For more information about the statute of limitations and how it applies to your case, please contact the lawyer of Patino Law Firm today.
What types of compensation am I eligible to receive?
An injury victim’s eligibility to secure compensation basically depends on the nature of his or her injury and its ensuing consequences. In most cases, personal injury victims are entitled to receive compensation for their medical bills, any income they may have lost while recovering, and the emotional or psychological trauma they experienced as a result of the accident. Additionally, courts may choose to award punitive damages to the victim as a way of punishing the person or party who caused the accident.
If you would like to learn more about the types of compensation that you may be eligible to receive, please contact Patino Law Firm today to discuss your case with a knowledgeable lawyer.
Who is liable for my injuries?
Liability for an injury often depends on a range of factors, and determining who is at fault for any particular injury can be surprisingly complicated. For example, this is especially true in instances in which an individual is injured by a party that is acting on behalf of another party, such as when a fatigued truck driver strikes another motorist’s vehicle due to his or her employer’s failure to follow the hours of service regulations. In these circumstances, the advice and assistance of qualified legal representation is often key to determining liability.
If you would like to learn more about who may be held responsible for your injuries, contact the attorneys of Patino Law Firm today.
Will my compensation be taxed?
Not usually. Compensation is only taxed in a few rare instances, such as when it’s actually interest from a larger sum of compensation or received as punitive damages. Normally speaking, compensation received for personal injuries won’t be considered income by the federal government and, as such, will be exempted from tax requirements for that claimant.
If you have questions or concerns about how the legal system or how compensation works in a personal injury lawsuit, an attorney at Patino Law Firm can help you. For more information about your rights and options in McAllen as an injured claimant seeking compensation, contact us today.