How to File a Personal Injury Claim in Vancouver
Were you seriously hurt in an accident in Vancouver? You could be entitled to compensation through a personal injury claim if the accident was another person’s fault. But if you’re like most people, you’ve never had to take legal action against someone before. Knowing how to file a personal injury claim isn’t exactly common knowledge.
At Warnett Hallen LLP, we know personal injury. Our Vancouver lawyers have been representing clients throughout British Columbia for over a decade. Whether you were injured in a car accident, slip and fall, dog attack, or other incident, our experienced lawyers can handle every aspect of the personal injury claims process for you. Better yet, much of the legal legwork can be done with little involvement from you. That leaves you free to focus on healing and rebuilding your life again.
You shouldn’t have to pay for someone else’s recklessness. Our Vancouver personal injury lawyers will fight for you to receive maximum compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. You can count on Warnett Hallen LLP to stand up for you and push for the justice you deserve.
It’s easy to learn what it takes to file a personal injury claim. Just arrange a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys. We’ll review your case, discuss all of your legal options, and handle all negotiations with the insurance companies for you.
Ready to get started? Call or contact us today.
Common Types of Personal Injury Claims
The types of accidents that typically result in Vancouver personal injury claims include:
- Motor vehicle accidents: Car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle crashes are the most common kind of personal injury claims filed in Vancouver. Serious collisions frequently leave victims with injuries that require extensive medical treatment, rehabilitation, and other long-term care needs. Compensation in auto accident cases will come through filing a claim with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), the province’s car insurer. At Warnett Hallen LLP, our lawyers are well-versed in the challenges that clients face when dealing with ICBC. We can help you navigate through any disputes that may arise.
- Medical malpractice: When medical professionals act negligently, it can have heartbreaking consequences. A medical malpractice claim is a type of personal injury action that seeks to hold healthcare workers and hospitals liable for any injuries to their patients that were caused by negligence.
- Occupiers’ liability accidents: Also called a slip and fall accident, these incidents occur when a person is hurt on someone else’s property due to a hazardous condition that hasn’t been repaired promptly or marked by warning signs. Negligent security, poor lighting, and other dangerous conditions can also lead to occupiers’ liability accidents.
- Defective products: Manufacturers are responsible for making sure their products are safe for consumers to use. When they fail to meet this duty, they can be held accountable in a personal injury lawsuit. Injuries caused by faulty vehicles, automotive parts, medications, and medical devices frequently give rise to product liability claims.
- Dog bites: Being attacked by a dog is a traumatic event. Dog bites can cause extremely serious injuries including deep puncture wounds, infections, scarring and permanent disfigurement. Victims can file claims against the party responsible for controlling the dog (usually its owner).
- Boating accidents: Being so close to the coast, many B.C. residents love to go out on boats. When boat operators act negligently by drinking too much or failing to pay attention to conditions around them, accident victims may be entitled to file a personal injury claim for their injuries.
- Pedestrian accidents: Vancouver can be a very dangerous place for pedestrians. Both drivers and pedestrians are responsible for following the law to avoid dangerous (and often deadly) collisions. When either party is negligent, compensation may be possible for any resulting injuries.
- Bicycle accidents: Cyclists are at a distinct disadvantage when an accident occurs. Unlike the occupants of a vehicle, who have airbags and seat belts to protect them in a collision, bicyclists are shielded from harm only by a helmet (if they are wearing one). If a cyclist is struck by an unsafe driver or thrown from the bike due to an unsafe road condition, obtaining compensation can be critical to help manage medical and rehabilitation costs.
- Wrongful death: Sadly, some accidents are fatal. When that is the case, surviving loved ones can file a wrongful death claim to recover the losses they sustained as a result.
If you or a family member suffered an injury in any kind of accident, it’s worthwhile to talk to a Vancouver personal injury lawyer to learn whether you have a case.
ICBC Claims vs. Personal Injury Lawsuits
An ICBC claim and a personal injury claim are not the same thing. ICBC only compensates car accident victims. That includes not only drivers and passengers in cars, but also pedestrians and bicyclists. If you’re in a crash, your lawyer can help you pursue compensation from the at-fault driver(s) involved in the wreck by filing a claim with ICBC.
Every other type of personal injury claim would go through the insurance company of whoever is at fault. For example, if you were injured by a faulty power tool, your lawyer would file a claim against the maker of that defective product. If you were in a slip and fall accident in a grocery store, your attorney would pursue a personal injury claim against the owner of the supermarket.
What is similar between the two types of claims is that both involve insurance companies. An insurance claim does not involve a courtroom, judge, or jury. A claim simply asks the insurance company to provide the compensation that injured victims are owed. If the at-fault party’s insurance company refuses to pay, a lawyer may recommend filing a lawsuit to demand the compensation you deserve. Most personal injury claims settle well before the lawsuit stage in Vancouver.
At Warnett Hallen LLP, our motto is “settle for more.” We do everything in our power to secure maximum compensation for you in a settlement to avoid the hassles of trial. That said, our legal team is comprised of tough trial lawyers who won’t hesitate to file a lawsuit if that’s what it takes to get justice for you and your family.
When to File a Personal Injury Claim
Not all accidents will require you to file a claim. The only exception to this rule is car accidents. Anyone involved in a crash is required to report it to ICBC.
With other types of accidents, there are certain times when injured individuals should consider filing a claim. Consult a lawyer if:
- You or a family member was seriously injured or killed in an accident caused by someone else.
- Your accident resulted in significant medical costs.
- Your claim with the insurance company has been denied.
- There are disputes over who is to blame for the accident.
- You were unable to return to work as a result of the incident.
- A settlement offer does not seem fair to you.
Ideally, you should contact a personal injury attorney before talking to the insurance company. Your lawyer can handle all communications with the insurance adjuster from start to finish, which ensures that your legal rights are fully protected.
In addition, your lawyer will be able to counsel you about when it’s time to settle. Oftentimes, insurance companies will urge you to settle well before you know the true extent of your injuries. Your lawyer will only agree to settle once he or she has a full understanding of how much you are expected to recover and what that means for your life.
In British Columbia, you have only two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury claim. Similarly, family members only have two years to file a wrongful death claim against the negligent party.
Put Our Personal Injury Lawyers to Work For You
There are many different paths a personal injury claim in Vancouver can take. Fortunately, it’s not a legal process that you have to navigate alone. A British Columbia personal injury lawyer at Warnett Hallen LLP can provide guidance about best possible course of action to take in your case and will work to maximize your chances of obtaining a full and fair award.
When you need solid advice and a team that will work hard for you, trust the personal injury attorneys at Warnett Hallen LLP. Our firm is based in Vancouver, but can handle claims for anyone in British Columbia.
Call or contact us today to set up your free case review. There’s no obligation, so you have nothing to lose.