Car accidents can completely turn someone’s life upside down. Out of the blue, a motorist can find themselves lying in a ditch or in a hospital bed in excruciating pain. Many victims need surgery and months of rehabilitation as they struggle to overcome debilitating injuries.
During this hectic time, it is very easy to forget that you need to seek compensation from the at-fault driver, either by submitting a demand letter or filing a lawsuit. Without the right legal assistance, accident victims could wait too long—and permanently lose their right to compensation. Please contact Khan Injury Law today to protect your rights.
You Have Three Years to File a Lawsuit
This is the statute of limitations found at RCW 4.16.080. It states that you must start a lawsuit within three years for any injury to your person or your personal property. This deadline covers both a claim for property damage as well as for bodily injury.
The Clock Starts with the Accident
The clock begins on the day you were hit. So if you were involved in an accident on July 1, 2021, the statute of limitations says you have until June 30, 2024. One day before the accident.
Delay Can Be Costly
What happens if you take too long? The answer might scare you.
If you don’t meet the statute of limitations, the defendant can ask the judge to toss your lawsuit out of court. And judges will do so since they will lack the power to hear the case because you took too long to file it.
This will mean you won’t get any compensation for your Kent car accident. Instead, you will be fully responsible for all your medical bills and will have to suffer the loss of income and property damage.
Don’t Expect an Insurer to Give More Time
Technically, you can file a claim with an insurance company and not file a lawsuit. However, you shouldn’t expect an insurer to give you any extra time to file an insurance claim. They negotiate settlements with an eye toward what will happen if negotiations break down and the parties end up in court.
If three years pass before you file an insurance claim, an insurer has little incentive to offer a settlement. They know a judge will dismiss any lawsuit.
Wrongful Death Claims Have a Three-Year Window
If a loved one died, then certain family members can bring a wrongful death lawsuit. This type of claim also has a three-year statute of limitations, but it begins on the date of the accident (which might not be the day of the death).
Call Our Kent Car Accident Lawyer Today
If you were involved in a car crash, our car accident attorneys will jump in and seek compensation for your injuries. We know how to file a complaint in the correct court, so you can be sure we will protect your rights. Once a lawsuit is filed, you can still negotiate a settlement with an insurer.
Please call us today to schedule a consultation at a convenient time.