An auto accident can create a very dangerous situation. It can cause you to suffer pain that lasts for years. It is always best to file a claim for any losses you suffer as soon as possible. However, you cannot do so until you know the extent of the losses you have had and the type of rehabilitation you need. In most situations, individuals will need to file this type of claim in a few months. However, in Indian accident claims, you have two years to take action.
However – there is much to know about these limitations. It is best to work closely with your Indianapolis auto accident attorney to ensure you file the right claim amount at the right time. At Doehrman Buba, we can help you do this.
What Is a Statute of Limitation?
Many states put a limit on the amount of time you have to file a claim. This applies to most types of personal injury claims. The statute of limitations gives you the right to take the responsible party to court to ask them for some type of compensation after suffering a loss. The amount of time you have depends on the type of incident and the state’s laws.
What Is Indiana’s Statute of Limitations?
As noted, in Indiana, Indiana Code Section 34-11-2-4 outlines that you have two years to file a claim for your auto accident cases. It applies to most types of personal injury cases. It’s important to clarify you have two years from the day of the incident to file a claim in a court of law.
Under this law, anyone who suffers loss or damage from the car accident has two years to file a claim. This includes a driver, any passengers in the vehicle, anyone hurt walking or biking, as well as anyone suffering property damage. Anyone who is a potential defendant should seek out legal representation to file a claim within the specified two years.
If someone dies in a car accident, the two-year limitation still applies. In this situation, someone representing the family, such as an immediate family member, can file the claim. In death cases, the same two-year limitation remains in place. It is very important for this type of claim to happen as soon as possible to ensure you receive the right type of compensation for your needs. The deadline here starts the day of the person’s death. This could be later than the date of the accident.
What Happens If the Statute of Limitations Expires?
It is not uncommon for people to wait too long to file a claim. In Indiana, if the statute of limitation expires, and then the party files the lawsuit, it is most likely the claim will be dismissed.
Why You Shouldn’t File a Lawsuit Immediately
While filing a lawsuit within the two-year period is important, this does not automatically mean you should file immediately. In some situations, the type and amount of damage is not fully recognized right away. Here are some examples:
- A person is in a car accident and suffers a broken arm. However, in the months after the accident, the injury does not heal well, requires surgery, or requires extensive physical rehabilitation. In this case, a claim filed in the days after the accident would limit the party’s ability to obtain additional compensation for the long-term care needs.
- An individual is injured in a car accident suffering a brain injury. Filing before the true understanding of the damage is realized limits the amount of coverage possible. The condition may worsen.
Keep in mind your attorney will work closely with you to determine all of your losses. This includes any type of lost time at work, medical bills, long-term care bills, loss of ability to work claims, and loss of use claims. It also includes any type of pain and suffering claims you may have.
The goal is to understand all of the losses you have but to file the case within the required timeframe. Not doing so can be a costly mistake on everyone’s part. If you file a claim, you do not have to settle right away. Lawsuits can be extended to include a time longer than the initial two-year period if there is reason to do so.
It is best to work closely with a car accident attorney who can help you understand the limitations of your lawsuit and your needs. The statute of limitations is only one component of personal injury claims. You will appreciate knowing what all of your risks are.
Schedule a Free Consultation with Your Auto Accident Attorney
If you’ve been in any type of auto accident, file a police report. Get to the emergency room. And, then, contact our team. Allow us to provide you with the information and resources you need to learn what your options are for overcoming your losses. We will help you balance the statute of limitations along with your need for long-term care. Contact Doehrman Buba today to speak to our attorneys during a free consultation. Call 317-844-9999 or use our online form for more information.