Glossary of Legal Terms for Personal Injury Cases

personal injury glossary- carlson & work

Personal Injury Glossary: A Guide to Understanding Legal Terms

Please note that this guide provides a general understanding of legal terms commonly used in personal injury cases in Nevada. However, it is essential to seek the advice of a qualified personal injury attorney who specializes in this area of law to obtain accurate and personalized guidance tailored to your specific situation. This guide should not be considered a substitute for professional legal advice.

  • Assumption of Risk: A legal doctrine stating that an individual understands and voluntarily accepts the potential risks associated with participating in an activity, which may limit their ability to seek compensation for injuries sustained during that activity.
  • Burden of Proof: The responsibility of the plaintiff (injured party) to provide sufficient evidence and convince the court that the defendant (responsible party) is liable for the injuries sustained.
  • Comparative Negligence: A legal principle that assigns a percentage of fault to each party involved in an accident based on their contribution to the incident. Compensation is then adjusted according to the assigned percentage of fault.
  • Damages: Monetary compensation awarded to the injured party in a personal injury case to compensate for losses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage.
  • Deposition: A pre-trial testimony given under oath by a witness or the parties involved in a personal injury case. It is typically recorded and can be used as evidence during the trial.
  • Duty of Care: The legal obligation of an individual or entity to act reasonably and prudently to prevent harm to others. In personal injury cases, establishing duty of care is crucial to proving negligence.
  • Expert Witness: A professional who possesses specialized knowledge, skill, or experience in a particular field and provides expert opinions and testimony on complex matters related to a personal injury case.
  • Liability: Legal responsibility for the harm caused by one’s actions or omissions. Establishing liability is essential to holding the responsible party accountable in a personal injury claim.
  • Loss of Consortium: Compensation awarded to a spouse or family member of an injured person for the loss of companionship, support, or services due to the injury.
  • Medical Malpractice: Negligent conduct by a healthcare professional that deviates from accepted medical standards, resulting in harm or injury to a patient.
  • Negligence: Failure to exercise reasonable care, resulting in harm or injury to another person. Negligence is a common legal concept in personal injury cases.
  • Pain and Suffering: Physical and emotional distress experienced by an injured party due to their injuries. Compensation for pain and suffering aims to compensate for non-economic losses.
  • Preponderance of Evidence: The standard of proof in civil cases, including personal injury claims, where the evidence presented by one party is more convincing or probable than the opposing party’s evidence.
  • Product Liability: The legal responsibility of manufacturers, distributors, and sellers for injuries caused by defective products.
  • Punitive Damages: Additional compensation awarded to the injured party above and beyond their actual losses, intended to punish the defendant for particularly reckless or malicious behavior.
  • Statute of Limitations: The legal timeframe within which a personal injury claim must be filed. In Nevada, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is generally two years from the date of the injury.
  • Strict Liability: Legal responsibility that holds a party liable for harm caused by their actions or products, regardless of fault or negligence.
  • Subpoena: A legal document that requires an individual to appear in court or produce specific documents or evidence for a personal injury case.
  • Settlement: An agreement reached between the parties involved in a personal injury claim, typically resulting in compensation for the injured party without going to trial.
  • Third-Party Claim: A claim made by an injured party against a party other than the directly responsible party. For example, a claim against an employer or an insurance company.
  • Tort: A civil wrong or harm caused by one person or entity to another, leading to legal liability and potential compensation.
  • Wrongful Death: A claim brought by the surviving family members of a deceased person whose death was caused by the negligent or intentional actions of another party.

Please bear in mind that this glossary aims to provide a foundational comprehension of frequently used legal terms in personal injury cases. To obtain specific legal advice and guidance, it is advisable to seek the assistance of a qualified personal injury attorney.


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