California legal regulations give personal injury victims the right to file compensation claims, and this protection also includes undocumented immigrants. What is a personal injury claim? It is a petition presented before a civil court to demand compensation from a natural person, company, or government agency for the injuries, losses, and damages caused to a person. The document is intended to demonstrate the negligence or other actions committed by the person responsible for the injuries and includes the monetary value of the fair and reasonable compensation that is due. What to do to file a personal injury claim? Regardless of your immigration status, to file a claim for an injury sustained in a car accident, a workplace accident, a slip and fall at a shopping mall, or other situations, you must do the following:
- First, make sure you get medical treatment. After sustaining an injury, you need to seek immediate medical attention, even if you think your injuries are not serious. If you let too long, your claim may lose steam, or insurers may use this to offer a lower payment on the grounds that your injuries are minor.
- Contact a personal injury attorney. It is recommended that a specialized lawyer review your case and determine if you have the elements to file a lawsuit. Many attorneys conduct free consultations and work under contingency fees.
How is the process? Although each case has its peculiarities, they generally develop as follows:
- Collection of evidence and formulation of the claim. When you and your attorney have sufficient evidence to show that you were injured by another person's negligent or intentional conduct, a claim is sent to the insurance company and the defendant's attorney.
- Negotiations. They can lead to a speedy conciliation if there is a fair and reasonable agreement between the parties. Or else, they can lead to a trial for a longer time in case disputes arise with the defendant's attorneys or the insurance companies refuse to pay the requested damages.