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The basics of filing a personal injury lawsuit

On Behalf of | Sep 25, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents, Personal Injury

People have many different reasons for wanting to file a personal injury claim, but there are usually two main motivations. The first is to feel a little sense of closure by holding a wrongdoer accountable for their actions. The second is to get the financial relief to which they are entitled.

Whatever might drive your decision, the rules for these cases remain the same. Here are five things you should keep in mind when considering a personal injury lawsuit.

1. You have two years to file

The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is two years. This means you have two years (usually from the date of the injury) to take legal action against whomever was responsible.

2. There are economic and non-economic damages

A successful personal injury lawsuit will usually result in the plaintiff being awarded damages, meaning financial compensation. Commonly, this will be economic damages covering direct costs from the incident, such as medical bills, lost wages or property damage. You may also be awarded non-economic damages for thins like pain and suffering or mental anguish.

3. There is no cap on damages

Some states limit the amount of money that can be recovered in a personal injury lawsuit. Georgia does not have damage caps for economic and non-economic damages.

4. Your level of fault may matter

Keep in mind, damages you are ultimately awarded will be reduced in a manner proportional to your level of responsibility. For example, if you were injured in a car crash but the wreck was 20% your fault, then your damages will be cut by 20%.

There is also a limit. If you are found to be 50% or more at fault, then by law, you cannot recover any damages.

5. Patience is important

Personal injury laws are complex. There are many factors that can influence the direction of a case and any resulting awards, and your attorney will need to sort through all of them.

In addition, these lawsuits often involve large insurance companies who are not keen to pay out. This means a case can stretch on longer than anticipated. During this time, it is important to remain patient and diligent. Ultimately, the truth will win out.

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