Defining Common Personal Injury Terms

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

Facing a personal injury case is intimidating not only because of the risk of potential property loss, but also because of the lack of familiarity you may have with the legal terms related to your case. With this in mind, here is a list of terms that tend to be encountered as a personal injury case unfolds.

Limitation Period

The statute of limitations is the period of time (established by law) in which a lawsuit can be filed to recover damages. It varies from case to case depending on the circumstances, and can range from one year to ten or more in civil lawsuits. Personal injury cases typically have statutes of limitations of two years.

Torts and intentional crimes

Almost every cause of action in a civil lawsuit – including personal injury claims – is a tort. Negligence, wrongful death, defamation and slander, breaking and entering, among others are all torts. So are civil aggressions.

Intentional torts are acts committed on purpose, which can also be crimes. Battery and assault, for example, can give rise to civil and criminal liability. The same goes for conversion (theft) and wrongful death (murder, manslaughter, etc.).

Test Load

The burden of proof refers to the plaintiff’s obligation to demonstrate the veracity of his allegations, or at least the probability that they are true. There are various thresholds of proof that may apply depending on the type of case being litigated. In personal injury cases, the burden of proof that normally applies is that a plaintiff must be able to show by evidence that the defendant is responsible for the acts.

While there are certain terms that are common to almost all personal injury cases, whether it is a slip and fall or a car accident, it is important to remember that each case of this type is different, and what will mark the difference in your favor is having an experienced attorney on your side. Contact us! We will make sure to use all our skills to obtain a favorable result.

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.