When people are coping with the pain, stress and disorientation which often results from a significant car crash or other type of accident or intentional criminal act, understandably the focus for most car accident injury victims is, and needs to be, on medical treatment and rehabilitation. Those struggling with these challenges may be tempted to postpone seeking legal advice, but this can be a costly mistake. The legal system is governed by a strict timing requirements referred to as the statute of limitations which are not flexible. Non-compliance can result in a permanent bar to recovery even if the car accident victim suffers devastating effects, such as paralysis, cognitive impairment, loss of a limb or even wrongful death. Further, the statute of limitations can bar a lawsuit even when the liability of the plaintiff is beyond dispute.
In other words, time is of the essence when pursing legal action following a motor vehicle collision. Because these deadlines have such a significant impact, our Georgia Personal Injury Lawyers at Montlick and Associates have provided key facts that prospective plaintiffs need to know about the statute of limitations and other timing requirements in personal injury lawsuits in Georgia. We invite you to read both parts of this two-part blog post.
Is the statute of limitations the same for all types of cases?
No. Some people injured by a drunk driver, defective product or inadequate medical care assume that the deadline for filing a lawsuit is the same for anyone who suffers injury or wrongful death. In reality, the statute of limitations can be impacted by the type of harm, such as injury, death or property damage. The statute of limitations also may depend on the type of conduct that caused the injury like intentional criminal action, medical malpractice, motor vehicle accidents and other types of tortious conduct. It can also vary depending on where the accident occured, and the nature of party that caused the accident. And the time deadlines may also be extended under some very limited circumstances, such as may be the case when the person who wants to bring a claim was a minor at the time of accident.
What other deadlines might apply in a personal injury lawsuit?
If one of the defendants in a personal injury lawsuit is a governmental entity, special notice requirements must be met before a lawsuit is filed. If these pre-lawsuit notice requirements are not satisfied, an injury victim may be barred from recovering damages in a lawsuit against the public entity. There are a range of other deadlines that might be relevant like deadlines that may be found in insurance policies. In addition, if a lawsuit is filed, there are a number of strict time deadlines that come into play. For example, there are time deadlines and requirements that govern the discovery process. It is important to provide documents, answers and information in a timely manner when requested by one’s personal injury attorney. When discovery responses are not provided in a timely fashion, the consequences can include attorney fee sanctions or even sanctions that limit the evidence that may be introduced at trial.
There is also the practical matter of delay- as in the possibility of loosing or making it difficult to presevere critical evidence.
Put Our Law Firm’s Over 39 Years Experience to Work For Your Injury Case
If you or a family member is injured by the unsafe, negligent or criminal conduct of another, our Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyers at Montlick and Associates have been representing injury victims for over thirty years throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.