Personal Injury Lawyer
If you have been involved in any kind of accident involving negligence, recklessness, carelessness, or an intentional act of violence, you may be able to file a personal injury claim or lawsuit. However, as you might have already guessed, time is of the essence. Depending on where the accident happened, and who was involved, will depend on how long you have to take legal action.
In most states, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is two years from the date of the accident. If someone lost their life, it may be considered a wrongful death case which still falls under personal injury law. In this case, the immediate family members will have approximately two years from the date of death. If you file a case after the statute of limitations, the court may dismiss your case.
Statute of Limitation Exceptions
There are a few exceptions to the statute of limitations. For example, if you are seeking compensation from a government entity, the statute may be significantly less. It is important to remember that some states’ statutes are also less or more than the average of two years. For example, in Tennessee, the statute is one year and in Maine it is six years. If you’re unsure about how long you have to file a personal injury claim, you should call a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Why You Should Act Now
Even though you might technically have some time to file a personal injury claim, it doesn’t mean you should wait until the last minute to do so. For example, your own insurance company will likely have a policy that mandates you to report the accident within 30-60 days. Furthermore, before you report what happened, you may want to ask a personal injury lawyer to find out what you should and should not say to both your own insurance company and that of the negligent parties’.
Another reason to act now is that your memories and recollections of what happened will be fresh in your mind. This can help you to relay them to your lawyer as efficiently as possible, and in return, your lawyer can properly investigate the case. The likelihood of reaching out to witnesses, gathering surveillance footage, and securing other hard proof will also be better.
Finally, by taking action as soon as possible, your case will have more credibility. Waiting longer, especially several months or years, gives credit to the defense and can cause them to ask about the extraneous circumstances which led you to wait so long.
When a Government Entity is Involved
If your case involves any kind of government entity, you may need to file a claim against the entity instead of (or in addition to) a private party. This would include a situation in which negligent party was working as a government employee (on shift/duty) at the time of the accident. It should be noted that this rule generally applies to federal employees and not a third party independent contractor who was hired by the government. For example, if a police officer t-boned your car and was at fault, you may pursue damages against the government.
Another way that you may pursue a claim against the government is when the accident occured at a construction site, or zone, and it was caused because of an error made on part of the state. For instance, there was a lack of signage in a construction zone and your crashed your car because of this failure to warn.
Government personal injury claims are very complex and have many different rules and procedures. You should not waste any time in getting started, and having an experienced personal injury lawyer Miami, FL trusts on your side will almost certainly help.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Needle & Ellenberg, P.A. for their insight into personal injury cases.