The Foundation of Personal Injury Law in the U.S.

Personal Injury Lawyers

Personal injury laws are a kind of tort law that finds its root in Biblical times. In earlier days, an individual who harmed another person was expected to repay. Today, individuals who harm others are punished through personal injury law. By the 17th century, most claimants could receive compensation in the court for any wages lost because of personal injury. Personal Injury claims date back to the 1860s that consisted of bizarre, but successful claims, such as fall caused by croquet hoops, bites by fish and ferrets, head injuries caused by bacon kept in boxes.

By the end of the 20th century, many tort scholars wrote about “enterprise liability.” Works of Guido Calabresi and legal opinion of Roger Traynor played a vital role. It was stated that those who preferred to engage in business activities and earned a profit from those businesses should pay for the accident cost connected with them. The strict liability law is restricted to product injury cases involving manufacturing defects. For instance, in the 70s Ford Motor Company was involved in a well-known product liability case. They released Ford Pinto, which tended to burst into flames when involved in accidents. It was proved that the manufacturer knew about the defect, but released it anyway. Many scholars have argued that the 19th century tort law was dominated by strict liability law.

Medical Malpractice & Auto Accidents

Around the Industrial Revolution, the personal injury lawsuits became more prevalent. The Robber Barons era saw corporations enjoying maximum power; therefore, laws were formed to protect workers from wrong treatment by their bosses or industry. This meant that the corporation could be sued for personal injuries when at fault.

The Common Law in the 17th century recognized that the if someone is hurt by another person, compensation should be granted to the injured person. At this time, the settlement was only awarded for physical injuries caused due to accident. There was no compensation for non-physical injuries, such as mental trauma. A personal injury law was made famous in the 1970s, when singer Connie Francis was awarded $2.5 million when she was raped at Howard Johnson’s Motor Lodge. The court found that the motel did not take appropriate steps to avoid the attack. A hotel must offer sufficient security and not allow people to loiter.

The personal injury lawyers started advertising in 1979 when Jacoby & Meyers made a decision that it was not unethical to advertise on television. Until then, the Yellow Pages were used for advertisement purpose. The role of personal injury law has changed drastically from the 19th century till date. Today, person injury laws include auto accidents lawyer, medical negligence, birth injuries, product liability, to name a few.

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