Within seconds, a car accident can change your life. A car accident can result in loss of life, significant physical injury or property damage. It can also result in tremendous financial expenses. Three legal claims are available for car accidents, including property damage, bodily injury, and personal injury protection. If you’ve been in a car accident, a personal injury attorney in Indiana can explain your options for pursuing legal action.
Legal Claims for Car Accidents
Car accident cases are grouped into three categories of legal claims based on the nature of the crash:
● Property damage claim
● Personal injury protection (PIP) claims
● Bodily injury claim
A property damage claim covers damage to your vehicle. A claim for property damage seeks compensation for repairing or replacing your vehicle due to damage from the accident. A PIP claim seeks auto insurance payment for medical bills related to the accident. Your insurance PIP policy determines your eligibility and limitations for a PIP claim. A bodily injury claim awards financial compensation for damages attributed to the car accident.
Understanding Indiana’s Statute of Limitations
Indiana has a statute of limitations for car accidents, which is a state law that imposes a time limit on the amount of time you have to file a claim. The deadlines vary based on the type of harm you suffered and the type of case you are planning to file. Indiana’s statute of limitations applies to most cases except car insurance claims.
Starting from the accident date, you have two years to file a car accident lawsuit in Indiana. The time limit is strict, so Indiana courts will most likely dismiss your case if you attempt to file the lawsuit past the deadline. However, certain exceptions apply in rare cases, which a car accident lawyer can explain to you in further detail if you miss the deadline.
In some car accidents, one driver’s actions clearly caused the accident and resulting damage or injury. But in some cases, the question of who is at fault may not be as straightforward. For those cases, Indiana’s state law includes comparative negligence, which is a situation where multiple parties are at fault for the accident. For example, in a case where one car makes an illegal left turn but is hit by another vehicle that was speeding, both parties share some of the fault. Indiana’s comparative negligence statute reduces the plaintiff’s damages by the percentage of their shared liability. Additionally, a partially at-fault driver cannot recover damages if his or her shared liability exceeds 50 percent.
If you’ve been in a car accident, now is the time to seek expert legal assistance. Contact Webster & Garino, LLC for a case review and legal guidance today.
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