How To Win a Personal Injury Lawsuit

People often erroneously believe that they are simply entitled to collect compensation if they have been injured because of someone else’s actions. The Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, however, spells out the reality, that victims have the right to seek compensation. In order to collect compensation for your losses, you will need to receive a favorable judgment or agreement saying as such.

Most of us simply assume that legal decisions are all made inside a courtroom, much as on TV and in the movies. In reality, most cases are settled outside of court. This is an excellent way in which to win your case since it eliminates the uncertainty that may be present in a jury trial. In this case, the defendant agrees to pay you a certain amount of money in exchange for which you agree to drop the charges against the defendant. As long as you are receiving a fair settlement this is good for you since it saves you time and money as well. You must, however, be wary of a settlement that is not for full value to you. If you are tricked or coerced into taking a lower settlement you will not be able to come back later and sue for the fair value. Offers that you receive before you have hired an attorney will generally be unfair, or low-ball offers. Always refuse to sign anything until you have taken the offer to reputable attorneys for their review and input.

Receiving a fair settlement is not a traditional type of business transaction. Sometimes victims believe that since they have a bit of business intelligence or since they run their own company that they will be able to negotiate a fair settlement. This is just not how the legal system operates. A defense attorney will only settle out of court if that attorney is convinced that a jury trial will bring an even more expensive payout for the defendant. When a non-lawyer sues an insurance company they may think that the insurance company will be intimidated into paying. Nothing could be further from the truth. These huge insurance companies have millions of dollars in their war chests and are always prepared to fight claims. They are very unlikely to be scared by the claims made by an unknown law firm, let alone by a non-lawyer attempting self-representation. The attorneys at our Law Office have been successfully litigating personal injury and wrongful death cases for over 20 years and have won millions and millions of dollars in settlements for our clients from major American insurers. These huge insurance companies are only too well aware of our outstanding track record and today will often seek to settle out of court, rather than face our tenacious attorneys in front of a jury.

If a personal injury case does not, for any number of reasons, settle out of court then it will go to trial. In order to win your case in front of a jury, you will need to present evidence supporting each of the four major elements of a personal injury claim. These four elements are duty, breach, cause, and damages. Let's discuss them now in more detail.


First of all, you will need to prove that the defendant owed you a duty of care. We all owe each other different levels of care in our lives, in order to avoid causing each other any harm, by acting as a reasonable person would act. This is referred to as the “reasonable person standard” and is the most typically applicable duty of care. This may change in different situations, however. Here is a list of scenarios where it would not apply:

Often times you will see a sign in a store that may warn you that, say, a floor is wet and slippery after being mopped, or that in a parking lot it isn’t safe to leave valuables in your car. Since most of us wouldn’t warn friends visiting our homes of these conditions why would a business owner do so? The answer: Store owners owe their customers a higher level of care than we do to our house guests. This situation can become more complicated if you now imagine that the store’s visitor is actually a robber during the night, not a daytime paying customer. Does the store still owe the same level of care to the robber? Generally speaking, the answer is no. Thus you may see that duty of care varies depending on the purpose of the visitor.

Doctors and other medical professionals have spent years of advanced study and on the job experience learning to treat patients. We consequently expect them to use their advanced knowledge to take all the necessary care of their patients. Thus they owe their patients a higher duty of care than they owe to others. On the job, a surgeon must exercise the duty of care of a reasonable surgeon, not just of a reasonable person.

At the job site, things also become more complicated. You may wonder how much care your employer owes you …. The answer will depend on what type of worker you are. If you are an employee then you are owed a fairly high level of care by your employer. He must maintain safe working conditions. If, however, you are a temp worker or contract worker then you are basically responsible for keeping your own working conditions safe. These workers are not owed a duty of care for safe working conditions.

What do we owe to passengers riding in our cars?

In many states, there are different levels of care required depending on whether these passengers are paying passengers of not. Generally, a driver must place a paying passenger’s safety at more priority than that of a non-paying passenger.

Children are generally held to a lower level of care than are adults, with the level of care based upon their experience and age. The exceptions to this general rule would include times when children might be engaged in normal adult activities, such as when driving a car, when they would be held to adult standards of care.

It is best to consult with reputable attorneys to fully understand the duty of care applicable to your personal injury case. Since Texas civil law relies on what is called “joint and several liability” multiple defendants can be the proximate cause of a victim’s injuries; consequently, the plaintiff may be able to sue all defendants. For example, if you have been hit by a drunk driver you may be able to sue not only the driver but the bar or restaurant where the driver was served excess alcohol.


After proving which level of care applies to your defendant, you must now demonstrate successfully that the defendant breached that duty of care that he or she owed you. Applying the “reasonable person” standard, defendants breach their duty of care if they do something that a reasonable person would not do.

Effectively, there are three ways that defendants violate their duty of care. Perhaps the most common way is through negligence. We commonly refer to negligence as a mistake or an accident. Even if this negligence lasts but a minute or two that is still sufficient to be held accountable. At a higher level beyond negligence is what is called “gross negligence.” This occurs when a defendant acts in a manner in which he is aware that may cause injury to another person. Drunk driving is a good example of this. The third level of negligence is when a defendant acts intentionally to cause harm, such as in a case of assault.


The last critical part of your case is to prove damages. You will need not only to prove that you did indeed suffer financial losses because of the injuries that you received in the accident, but you must also calculate the amount of these damages. This can be complicated since you will also need to substantiate every penny of these losses.

Again, it must be noted how critically important it is to substantiate all of these elements in your case. If you fail to bring evidence for even but one element you will definitely lose your lawsuit. One of the experienced attorneys at our Law Office can certainly assist you in preparing all evidence needed in order to prevail in the courtroom.


After you have proven that your defendant breached his or her duty of care you must prove that these actions lead directly to your injuries. If multiple parties were indeed responsible, then proving this may be difficult, to say the least. On occasion, a defendant will also attempt to blame a third party in order to escape responsibility. In these scenarios, you will need abundant evidence to win your case.

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