Bodily Vs Personal Injury: What’s the Difference?

It seems like every day we discover a new set of words that seem to mean the same thing, but in reality, don’t. Comic book and graphic novel, adverse and averse, sympathy and empathy…the list goes on. And now we have to throw personal injury and bodily injury onto the list.

This seems like a minor headache, but if you’re planning to enter the legal realm with these terms, not knowing the difference can end in catastrophe. So now what?

So let’s settle this once and for all. We’re here to see where the differences lie in the battle of bodily vs personal injury! So crack open your dictionaries and thesauruses, because we’re starting right now!

Bodily vs Personal Injury

The primary difference between bodily and personal injury is in what types of injury they pertain to. Bodily injury refers to physical injuries inflicted on you by another person or due to another person’s actions.

On the other hand, personal injury is a legal term that refers to a claim someone can make to sue for damages due to physical, mental, or emotional injury caused by another party.

The Field of Bodily Injury

While not having much of a legal presence, bodily injury tends to apply more in the realm of insurance. In every state sans Florida, the law requires you to have bodily injury liability insurance. Personal injury insurance is available, but not required. 

Without it, however, you open yourself up to being responsible for paying off any lawsuits you incur as a result of an accident where you are the perpetrator. Plus, you have to handle the payment of your medical bills regardless of fault.

However, bodily injury is more limited in terms of compensation. Since it tends to go through insurance, you will usually get a set amount of money from the insurance provider of the offender as compensation for hospital fees, loss of income while injured, etc. However, things like pain and suffering don’t fall under that banner and you will need to try and find a personal injury lawyer if you want to start a lawsuit up on that front.

The Field of Personal Injury

Personal injury allows you to claim more in damages (due to the mental/emotional injury elements getting the inclusion). However, the terms of “liability” get a little more complicated. It’s decided by a judge in a trial, which means you could lose and get no compensation. 

If the injury killed you or placed in you a near-death state, your immediate family can benefit from the personal injury lawsuit (this is trickier with bodily injury insurance). A personal injury lawsuit will also require you to provide proof that the offending party acted in a negligent fashion and that said negligence was what lead to your injury.

The More You Know

So now that you know the exact specifications of the bodily vs personal injury “war”, you’re ready to take action should tragedy strike. If you know a victim of such injury, consider sharing this article with them! So until next time, good luck and stay safe out there.