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Should I Speak with a Personal Injury Attorney after a Burn Injury from a Building Fire?

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If you’ve been hurt in a building fire, choose a personal injury lawyer who has expertise in this practice area. You may be entitled to recover compensation from a person or entity whose negligence caused it. You will need to be able to prove that the defendant breached a duty and that the fire and your injury were logical consequences.

Fire injuries are unique because they can take specialized knowledge to identify– and explain– the cause of it. Your lawyer will likely work with expert investigators who will try to pinpoint the cause as well as the path of the fire. Your personal injury lawyer will also call on doctors to explain how your injuries resulted from the blaze and your future prognosis.

Who is legally responsible for a burn injury?

There is no clear-cut answer to who is liable for a building fire and the injuries that result. For example:

  • A property owner or management company might be responsible if the building did not have proper fire alarms or required safety features like fire doors or escapes.
  • A manufacturer might be liable if defective fire safety equipment played a role in the blaze or resulting injuries.
  • A builder, designer, or safety inspector might bear some responsibility if the building did not meet fire code standards.

Proving liability means establishing both what happened and why. It may involve detailed reports about the cause and origin of the blaze, as well as a legal analysis to determine the responsible parties.

How to make a claim for a burn injury

You may have the right to file a lawsuit against any potentially liable parties. The lawsuit needs to be filed within the applicable statute of limitations, or your case will be barred. It is helpful to talk to a lawyer much earlier than this, though, because a delay can allow valuable evidence to be lost.

Further, if your case names a municipality or another government entity as a defendant, you might be required to file a notice of claim within a shortened time frame– such as six months from the date of the fire. If you don’t, you will lose your right to pursue a claim.

Contact us at Rutter Mills for a free case evaluation

The process can seem complicated but the personal injury lawyers at Rutter Mills manage these and other matters so you can focus on getting your life back to normal. If you need counsel in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, or the nearby Hampton Roads area, call today to schedule a free consultation.

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"The staff at Rutter Mills worked for me from the first minute I was in their office. They called and emailed every week and kept better records than I did. I was injured and had to undergo two operations from the accident. The recovery period was long with many physical therapy sessions over the next year. The staff emailed me many times, asking if there was anything they could do to make me feel better during my recovery. During this time my attorney was active in filing the paperwork for court litigation, but was contacted by the other law firm that wished to discuss settling my case. Depositions were done and the final one was scheduled and I was present to complete that phase of the case. My attorney got a maximum award for me and I will be forever grateful for his and their staff's work and attention during my time of legal need. Rutter Mills will be my only call if I ever need legal representation in the future." ★★★★★ -Dan, Rutter Mills Client