The Birmingham accident attorneys at Cross & Smith have helped many victims injured by negligence. Our dedicated and experienced attorneys work to investigate all liable parties to help ensure you receive full compensation for your injury. Located in the historic Landmark Center, our Birmingham office is proud to serve personal injury victims in Alabama and beyond.
Accidents happen every day in Birmingham and other cities across Alabama. Under personal injury law, preventable accidents caused by careless conduct result in liability. Unlike criminal law, intent to cause the harm is not required. Any person, entity, or combination of forces is capable of acting carelessly to injure another. This is because every party is under a legal duty to act with reasonable care. Failure to meet this standard makes breaching parties liable for any harm arising out of their negligence. Common accidents and injury involving negligence include:
Personal injury law allows victims to recover compensation from parties that caused their injury. Proving liability requires showing the at-fault party breached a legal duty, causing the victim’s injury. In a car accident, for example, an intoxicated motorist breaches a legal duty to safely operate a vehicle. By choosing to get behind the wheel while impaired, the driver endangers the lives of others. Motorists similarly fail to act reasonably when they speed through traffic, swerve between lanes, or drive while distracted. When these reckless mistakes cause an accident, the negligent drivers are liable for any injuries or damage that result.
Although a monetary award can never make up for a victim’s loss, it is the closest form of relief the law allows. In personal injury cases involving accidents, medical malpractice, premises and product liability, these damages may include:
While most personal injury cases involve compensation for medical expenses, lost income, and non-economic damages for negligent conduct, punitive damages are recoverable if the at-fault party’s conduct was wanton, reckless, willful or intentional or if the at-fault party consciously or deliberately acted toward the injured person with oppression, fraud or malice. Punitive damages in Birmingham and throughout Alabama must be proven by clear and convincing evidence. As an experienced Birmingham personal injury lawyer can tell you, the purpose of punitive damages is to punish the defendant for wrongful conduct and to protect the public by deterring or discouraging the defendant and others from doing the same or similar wrongs in the future. Compensatory or nominal damages must be awarded before punitive damages are allowed. For example, in product liability cases, courts may award punitive damages to deter future harmful behavior. This is common where manufacturers knew of the danger to consumers, but sacrificed consumer safety to cut costs or increase profit. If negligence resulted in a wrongful death, under Alabama law, the only damages recoverable are punitive damages. The purpose of punitive damages for wrongful death in Alabama is to preserve human life as well as to punish wrongful conduct and deter or discourage the same or similar wrongs in the future. A spouse is allowed to make a claim for loss of consortium if the injured party suffered physical injuries. Consortium is the spouse’s right to the love, company, fellowship, cooperation, assistance, society, affection, services and comfort of the injured party and the right to continuation of the normal marital relationship.
If you were injured in an accident caused by negligence, the Birmingham accident attorneys of Cross & Smith can help. Our attorneys have prevailed in all types of accident and injury cases, recovering millions of dollars for injured victims in Birmingham and throughout Alabama. At Cross & Smith, we know that accidents are life-changing and difficult to face. That is why we are dedicated to protecting your rights and helping you get back on your feet. Let us help you maximize your recovery and obtain the compensation you deserve. Call us today at (877) 791-0618 for a free consultation or contact us online.