In business, countless legal issues can arise. Two types of claims that businesses may face are personal and advertising injuries. These terms are often used interchangeably, but they are two distinct liability areas. In this article, we will explain personal and advertising injuries, the damages that may be awarded, and how to protect your business from these types of claims.

What Is a Personal Injury?

A personal injury is a claim that arises when an individual is harmed in some way due to the negligence of another party. This can include slip and fall accidents, car accidents, or injuries caused by defective products. In business, personal injury claims can arise from workplace accidents or injuries caused by a company’s products.

Several elements must be present for a personal injury claim to be successful:

  • The injured party must show that the defendant (the person or company being sued) had a duty to ensure their safety.
  • They must show that the defendant breached that duty through action or failure to act.
  • The injured party must show that the breach of duty caused their injuries.
  • They must show that they suffered damages as a result of their injuries.

What Is an Advertising Injury?

Advertising injury is a type of liability that arises when a company’s advertising causes harm to another person or business. This can include defamation, false advertising, or infringement of intellectual property rights. For a claim of advertising injury to be successful, the injured party must show that they suffered some type of harm due to the defendant’s advertising.

Types of Damages

If a business is found liable for a personal or advertising injury, it may be required to pay damages to the injured party. The types of damages that may be awarded depend on the case’s specific circumstances. In general, damages fall into two categories: compensatory and punitive.

Compensatory damages are intended to compensate the injured party for their losses. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. On the other hand, punitive damages are intended to punish the defendant for their wrongdoing. These damages are often awarded in cases where the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious.

Protecting Your Business

Personal and advertising injuries can be costly to businesses in terms of legal fees and damages awarded. There are several steps that businesses can take to protect themselves from these types of claims.

One of the most important things that businesses can do is to ensure that they have adequate insurance coverage. General liability insurance typically covers personal and advertising injuries, but it is important to review the policy carefully to ensure all potential risks are covered.

Another way to protect your business is to be careful about the language you use in your advertising. Avoid making false or misleading claims, and support your statements with evidence. If you are unsure about the legality of your advertising, consult a lawyer specializing in advertising law.

Finally, it is important to have policies and procedures in place to prevent accidents and injuries from occurring in the workplace. This can include regular safety training for employees, proper maintenance of equipment and facilities, and clear guidelines for handling hazardous materials.


Personal and advertising injuries are two types of liability that businesses may face. While they are distinct areas of liability, they can both be costly and damaging to a business. By understanding what personal and advertising injuries are, the types of damages that may be awarded, and how to protect your business from these types of claims, you can minimize your risk and ensure that your business is prepared to handle any legal issues that arise.

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