When you file a personal injury claim in Texas, simply saying that another party’s negligence makes you “feel” illness or discomfort is not enough. In some cases, you’ll need to produce an expert who can actually prove that you’ve been made ill or discomforted. Before you take any other action, if you have been injured or made ill and you’re ready to sue, speak first with an experienced Dallas personal injury attorney. To assist their clients, personal injury attorneys work routinely with experts who may be called as witnesses in personal injury cases: crash reconstruction experts, civil engineers, medical experts and others are frequently called on to testify in personal injury proceedings.

Symptoms Caused by Discomfort

In Texas, for example, a toxic tort claim – a claim that you’ve been injured or made ill by exposure to toxic chemicals and/or fumes – must be supported by expert testimony. Specifically, a Texas appellate court held in October that claims for damages due to “symptoms caused by discomfort” do not fall within the domain of a layperson’s knowledge and experience. In that case, plaintiffs leased mineral rights to their property to Marathon Oil, which then conducted oil and gas operations in the area surrounding the plaintiffs’ home. After several years, plaintiffs alleged that Marathon exposed them to noxious odors, chemicals, and dust, exacerbating pre-existing ailments. They sued Marathon for negligence. The appellate court ruled that plaintiffs were attempting to sidestep the requirement for expert testimony by drawing a false distinction between “symptoms of discomfort” and “symptoms of disease.” The Court held that because symptoms of both discomfort and disease fall outside a layperson’s general knowledge and experience, the cause of such symptoms must be confirmed by expert testimony.

When you are injured in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and you seek an attorney to fight for justice on your behalf, make certain that your attorney lines up the expert witnesses that you will need for your claim to prevail. Ensure that you have high-quality legal representation and an attorney who will use every necessary legal tool in the fight for justice on your behalf. If you’ve been injured by negligence, discuss your options at once with an experienced Dallas personal injury attorney.