There's no way around it: accidents are a fact of life. From our first tumble as a child to our fender benders as adults, human beings accept a certain amount of risk as they go about their daily routines. However, there are mishaps that occur thanks to the negligence of another party, leaving victims with serious injuries and life-altering disabilities. Victims of these types of accidents shouldn't have to shoulder the burden of medical expenses, loss of wages or funeral costs alone.
For this reason, the United States has a robust civil court where victims, or "plaintiffs" can bring a lawsuit against a company, the government or even another individual, seeking restitution for their injuries. This is deemed a "personal injury lawsuit." In a lawsuit, the victim, and his or her lawyers, will have a chance to make a case that the injuries incurred were the fault of the defendant. If that can be proven, the defendant may have to pay compensation.
Most personal injury cases never actually end up in a civil court. Many are settled ahead of time through a settlement. In other words, the defendant pays the plaintiff an agreed-upon sum of money to settle the matter out of the courts.
Keep in mind that there are statutes of limitations on filing a personal injury lawsuit. Essentially, you have a set amount of time to file your suit before that eligibility expires. The period typically begins when you discover your injury. If you feel like you've suffered an injury because of the negligence of another, an attorney may be able to help you file a suit.