Difference Between Bodily Injury and Personal Injury
If you are involved in an accident, you will likely hear some terms you might not be familiar with as you pursue a claim for damages. Two standard terms used in accident claims are bodily injury and personal injury. While these terms sound similar, they have different meanings.
What Is Bodily Injury in a Bedford Accident Case?
Bodily injury refers to any physical injury to your body. Examples of bodily injury include, but are not limited to:
- Neck injuries and whiplash
- Spinal cord injuries
- Nerve damage
- Cuts, abrasions, and bruises
- Broken bones and fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Internal organ damage
- Amputations and loss of limbs
- Back injuries
- $30,000 for bodily injury or wrongful death per person
- $60,000 for bodily injury per accident
Liability insurance coverage compensates accident victims for injuries and damages when an insured driver causes a car crash. Generally, liability insurance also covers personal injuries in a car accident case.
However, PIP or Personal Injury Protection coverage does not compensate a victim for all personal injuries caused by a car accident. PIP insurance only pays for medical bills, lost wages, funeral expenses, and household services/personal care.
What Is Personal Injury in a Bedford Accident Case?
Personal injury includes bodily injury. It also includes emotional, mental, and intangible damages. These damages are referred to as non-economic damages.
Therefore, in addition to your physical injuries, a personal injury claim would include damages related to:
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
- Psychological injuries, including PTSD, depression, anxiety, and more
- Diminished quality of life
- Physical pain and suffering
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Impairments and disabilities
PIP insurance does not compensate accident victims for their non-economic damages. Liability insurance or bodily injury liability insurance compensates you for all types of damages caused by an accident, including economic and non-economic damages.
Legal Aspects of Personal Injury Claim in Bedford, TX
There are several legal aspects of a personal injury claim that accident victims need to be aware of to protect their rights. Things you need to know about personal injury accident claims are:
You Must Prove Liability for Your Claim
Texas is an at-fault state for personal injury claims. The injured party has the burden of proving the other party caused the accident and that they sustained damages because of the accident. If they cannot prove their case, it is doubtful they can prove liability to receive compensation for damages.
The elements of a personal injury claim based on negligence are:
- The party you accuse of causing your accident owed you a legal duty of care.
- That party failed to meet their duty of care because of their actions or inactions.
- The party’s breach of duty was the direct and proximate cause of the accident.
- Your damages and injuries were the result of the accident.
A Bedford personal injury lawyer can help you recover evidence proving the legal elements of negligence. Personal injury cases based on other causes of action could have additional or slightly different legal elements, including product liability, wrongful death, premises liability, and medical malpractice.
Contributory Fault Applies to Personal Injury Cases in Texas
PIP insurance for bodily injury is no-fault insurance. Therefore, you do not need to prove liability to recover reimbursement for medical bills and lost wages if you have a PIP policy. Additionally, contributory fault would not apply.
However, contributory fault applies to all personal injury claims. If you are partially to blame for causing your injury, the court can reduce the amount you receive for your claim. For example, if you are 20% to blame for causing a car crash, you only receive 80% of your damages.
However, Texas’s modified comparative negligence law has a 50% bar rate. If you are more than 50% to blame for causing the accident, you cannot recover any money for your claim.
Personal Injury Claims Are Subject to the Texas Statute of Limitations
The deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the injury or accident date for most claims. Some exceptions could change the deadline. Therefore, it is always best to seek legal advice from a Bedford personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Learn More About Personal Injury and Bodily Injury Claims in Texas
Filing injury claims after an accident can be frustrating and confusing. The insurance company will not help. Its goal is to avoid liability for damages.
An experienced Bedford personal injury attorney can explain your rights and legal options during a free consultation. They can help you pursue all available claims to increase your financial recovery.
Contact the Bedford Personal Injury Lawyers at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers for Help Today
For more information, please contact an experienced Personal Injury lawyer at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers to schedule a free initial consultation today. We have convenient locations in Bedford and Fort Worth, Texas.