Have you suffered any injuries due to the negligence of another person? Have you been looking for ways to get compensation? Understanding personal injury law is one of the most important things to consider when pursuing a legal claim.

If you want to know the basics of personal injury law, then here is the answer to all of your questions. This article talks about the basics of personal injury law, including the types of claims and the elements to prove them.

What is personal injury law?

Personal injury law is the civil law that applies if anyone hurts you. It is also well known as tort law. This law helps you file a legal claim in federal court against one or more parties who caused you injuries and losses.

It deals with the legal rights and responsibilities of a person who has been injured by the negligence or intentional actions of another individual.

The main purpose of personal injury law is to offer compensation to victims for their injuries and damages by holding the liable party accountable for their wrongful actions.

Here are the wide range of situations covered in a personal injury claim:

  • Construction accidents
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Animal attacks
  • Defective products
  • Premises liability
  • Nursing home abuse
  • Wrongful death
  • Toxic exposure
  • Product liability injury

What are the types of personal injury claims?

The following are the main types of legal claims that arise in personal injury law:

Accident Injuries

Personal injury law applies if you are harmed by someone’s negligence or failure to perform their professional obligation. This includes medical negligence claims when a healthcare provider or doctor accidentally hurts you, accidents on properties when renters or owners are negligent in maintaining their space, truck accidents, and much more.

Strict Liability Claims

It imposes liability on anyone, regardless of their negligence or intent. Strict liability applies in specific circumstances where the activity involved is inherently dangerous or poses a high risk of hurting another individual.

For instance, a manufacturer who produces a defective product that injures a buyer is strictly responsible. A dog owner who owns a ferocious dog that bites anyone is held responsible for the injuries.

Intentional Torts

Intentional torts are wrongful acts that are done on purpose to hurt another individual. It includes battery, assault, and defamation.

For instance, if anyone harms you intentionally, personal injury laws offer the right to file a claim for compensation.

Elements of Personal Injury Law

You should prove the four elements below to win a personal injury claim.

Duty of Care

Duty of care is the first element in a personal injury claim. It is the duty an individual should practice for another person to protect their safety and wellness. 

Breach of Duty

Once the duty of care is determined, the victim should prove how the defendant breached it. In car accident cases, this breach may happen because the defendant chose to violate traffic laws or was distracted while driving.


The failure to practice reasonable care that led to the underlying accident falls under the third element. The victim should prove that their injuries were caused by the defendant’s actions.


It is not enough for an individual to be involved in an accident. They should have sustained injuries due to the accident. The fourth element of personal injury law is related to the losses the victim suffers due to the defendant’s breach of duty of care.

What are the damages available?

The following damages are applicable when seeking compensation for a personal injury claim.

Special Damages

Financial losses are considered special damages. It covers tangible losses directly related to the injury, like medical expenses, property damage, lost income, and other economic damages.

General Damages

These are the non-tangible losses a victim suffers. Although they are not easy to calculate, general damages account for some of the highest compensation amounts ever received. Losses like emotional distress, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life fall under general damages.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are awarded to penalize the negligent person for their bad behavior and to prevent such conduct in the future.

While seeking compensation for a personal injury, it is important to understand the above types of damages. It is better to consult a personal injury lawyer who can help you calculate and prove the damages in your claim.

Final Thoughts

It is not easy to pursue a claim, even though you may know the basics of personal injury law. If you have sustained any injuries, don’t waste your time. Hire an experienced personal injury attorney to protect your rights and recover the compensation you deserve.