Accidents can happen anywhere at any time, even while you are at church. When you are injured because of someone else’s negligence, you have a legal right to be compensated for your injuries. While you may feel awkward about filing a claim against your church, you may have no other choice to help pay for the bills that continue to mount from your injury. Most churches carry a liability policy that covers accidents on the church grounds, and often at church activities, even when they are held far away from the church building. If you have been injured in a church accident, you need to understand your rights.
Types of Church Accidents
Church accidents happen in many different ways. If someone was careless or reckless and caused you a serious injury, you may have a legal right to file a claim for compensation. Some examples of church accidents include:
- Slip or trip and fall
- Sports league injury from poorly maintained surface
- Broken chair or pew
- Poorly maintained equipment
- Uneven flooring
Types of Injuries in Church Accidents
There are many ways you can injure yourself in a church accident. Some of the most typical examples are:
- Sprained ankles
- Fractured bones
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Torn or ripped tendons, ligaments, and muscles
After you have been injured you need to see a doctor as soon as possible Even if you do not need emergency care, you should still see your regular doctor within three days of the accident. This is to make sure you get the treatment you need to recover as quickly as possible and to help document your injuries and their cause in case you later need to file a claim.
What You Need to Make a Claim
When it is time to make a claim for you injuries in a church accident, you will need a lot of documentation including:
- Medical records
- Summary of medical expense
- Any mileage expenses
- Documentation of lost income
- Basis for pain and suffering damages
- Explanation of why the church was negligent
The most successful claims take as much care in proving the case to the insurance company as they do to the court. The more credible evidence you have to back up your demands, the more likely you will be able to settle your case without having to go to trial.
Issues With Making a Claim
When trying to get compensated for your injuries, you may run into several problems. Most states have a very short window for pursuing personal injury claims. If you do not begin working on your claim right away, you may run out of time and lose your chance to recover anything.
Churches make sympathetic defendants in a court case. Insurance companies understand that most people are reluctant to take their church to court and that many juries will have sympathy for a church. This can mean that insurance companies only make small offers to try and settle the case, because they believe they can win at trial, or even if they lose, the damages will be small.
Were you on the Job?
If you were employed by the church or were on the church grounds as part of your job, you may have a worker’s compensation claim and a personal injury case. You will need to speak with an experienced worker’s compensation lawyer to make sure you are pursuing all of your rights.
The law in most states prevents you from suing your employer if you are covered by a worker’s compensation policy. However, if your employer does not have the insurance they are legally required to carry, or you were hurt by a third party while on the job, you likely have a personal injury claim.
Why You Might Need a Lawyer
Most churches have some form of insurance. You need to be able to pay for your medical bills, and be compensated for any missed work. Filing a claim can be emotional for many church goers. However, you are not being vindictive or unforgiving. When you file a claim you are simply following the process the law has set up.
A lawyer can help distance you from the emotion of the entire claims process. A lawyer can also help you know when you are being offered a fair settlement and what kind of case you have. Most people will put more money in their pocket when they have a lawyer, even after attorney fees, than they could get on their own.
We can help connect you with a lawyer to review your case. You don’t have to face this process alone. You be running out of time to bring your claim. Take action today to protect your rights. Make sure you get all of the compensation you are legally entitled to.
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