A personal injury occurs when another party causes you harm. The person may have caused the harm because of negligence, intentional acts, or other wrongdoing.
A personal injury case is a claim or lawsuit seeking compensation for damages. The injured party seeks to enforce personal injury laws that create liability for the at-fault party’s actions. Proving liability results in financial damages owed by the at-fault party to the injured person.
Types of Personal Injury Cases in Nevada
Personal injuries can result from numerous situations and accidents.
Filing a personal injury claim may begin with:
- Car accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Medical malpractice
- An injury caused by a defective product (product liability)
- Slip and fall accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Wrongful death
- Dog bites
- Truck accidents
Negligence claims account for a large percentage of personal injury cases, including claims involving motor vehicles. However, intentional torts can also be the reason for a personal injury claim, including road rage and assault.
Some personal injury claims are based on strict liability, including many product liability cases. Vicarious liability could apply in cases in which an employee causes an injury to another person, and the person seeks to hold the employer liable for damages.
What Do I Need to Prove to Win a Personal Injury Case in Nevada?
Personal injury cases based on negligence have four legal elements. You must have evidence that proves each legal element by a preponderance of the evidence.
The elements are:
- Duty – The party who caused the accident or injury owed you a duty of care. For example, doctors owe their patients a duty of care, and drivers have a duty of care to follow traffic laws.
- Breach of Duty – The party breached the duty of care by failing to act with the same level of care a reasonable person would have used under the same circumstances.
- Causation – The party’s conduct or omissions were a direct and proximate cause of your injury.
- Damages – You sustained damages because of the party’s breach of duty.
The legal elements may vary if a personal injury case is based on strict liability or intentional acts. Regardless, you must prove that the party is responsible for the cause of your injury to win a personal injury claim.
What Damages Can I Receive in a Personal Injury Case?
Nevada personal injury laws permit injured parties to seek compensation for:
- Economic damages – Financial losses associated with the accident, injury, and recovery
- Non-economic damages – Pain and suffering experienced because of the accident and injury
- Punitive damages – Intended to punish parties for acting with malice, fraud, or oppression and are only awarded in a small number of cases (NRS §42.005)
Economic damages are the monetary losses you experience because someone injured you. These damages include your medical bills, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, diminished earning capacity, and long-term nursing care.
Non-economic damages compensate you for the mental anguish, physical pain, and emotional distress you experience. Also included in non-economic damages is compensation for permanent impairments, loss of enjoyment of life, disfigurement, and diminished quality of life.
Proving the value of your damages could be complicated, especially in cases involving catastrophic injuries and permanent disabilities. Your lawyer may work with medical experts, economists, and other expert witnesses to assess your damages and calculate the maximum value for your personal injury claim.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Cases in Nevada?
States set the deadlines for filing personal injury lawsuits under their jurisdiction. For most wrongful death actions and personal injury cases, the statute of limitations in Nevada is two years from the date of death or injury. However, there are exceptions.
The statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims is three years from the date of the malpractice or one year from the date the injury was or should have been discovered (whichever is sooner).
Talking with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after an injury or accident is best to avoid losing your right to pursue a legal claim for damages.
How Can Comparative Negligence Affect My Personal Injury Case?
Nevada’s modified comparative negligence law reduces the amount of compensation you can receive for a personal injury claim by your percentage of fault for causing your injury.
For example, suppose a jury finds you 10% at fault for the cause of a car accident. They award you $100,000 for damages. However, you would only receive $90,000 – the amount of compensation awarded minus 10% for your part in causing the accident.
It is important to note that the law has a 51% bar. Therefore, if your percentage of fault is 51% or higher, you cannot receive any money for a personal injury claim.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyers to Discuss Your Personal Injury Case
Our legal team has extensive experience handling personal injury claims. We have the skills, resources, and knowledge to help you receive compensation for your injuries and damages. Call our law firm to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced Las Vegas personal injury attorneys at (702) 570-9000.