Does Personal Injury Have to Involve Bodily Harm?

When you suffer an otherwise avoidable injury, you may experience a host of confusion, frustration and emotions. Law enforcement, prosecutors, and attorneys use terms such as “personal injury” and “ bodily harm”. We believe you should know the difference between those as well as how to go about seeking justice if you have suffered from either one of them.  We are here to help assist you in answering this very question. 



Bodily Harm vs. Personal Injury:


Bodily Harm:

Bodily harm is often used in criminal court proceedings to refer to injuries incurred by a person who has been a victim of a crime, like assault, for example. Bodily harm only discusses physical damage to a person. The severity of the bodily harm will determine the severity of the charges against the perpetrator.


Personal Injury:

Personal injury is a legal term commonly used in civil court settings, and is defined as any type of injury that happened as a result of an accident (negligence).  In civil law, a person with a personal injury claim can only be made whole by receiving money.  Physical, emotional, and mental damages all have a monetary value. Personal injury suggests you have a legal claim for medical treatment, financial compensation, lost wages, pain and suffering, etc.


Let’s look at the elements of a Personal Injury / Negligence Claim.


Elements of Personal Injury / Negligence in Washington State:

To establish a personal injury case, you (the person pursuing damages) must prove:

  • You were owed a duty of reasonable care.
  • The negligent party did not act reasonably or breached their duty of care
  • The negligence/breach was the cause of your injuries. 
  • You were injured.


Irrespective of where your injury occurred – in the grocery store, at work, in a doctor’s office or during surgery, a qualified and knowledgeable personal injury attorney can examine your case and determine the best line of attack to prove negligence and recover damages. 


When facing personal injury, worker’s compensation, and criminal charges in Washington, you don’t want just any lawyer. You need a team of local attorneys who understand local, state, and federal laws inside and out. At Quantum Legal, we offer our clients over 50 years of experience representing clients in the areas of life that affect them most. You can rest assured that we will do everything in our power to get you the best results possible for your case. Call our southeastern Washington office at (509) 783-5551 to schedule your no-cost legal consultation.

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