A car accident can leave you with a range of injuries. While some injuries (like bruises) may not be serious, others (like spine, head and internal injuries) may require specialized treatment. And this can leave you with a huge medical bill. Add to this the cost of long-term care, lost income and property damage and you could be talking about tens, perhaps, hundreds of dollars in damages.
If your injuries were the result of someone else’s fault, you deserve justice. But personal injury claims, like most legal matters, can be complicated. Understanding how the law works can give you an upper hand in your personal injury claim.
Here are two statutes that you need to know when pursuing a personal injury claim in Alabama:
Alabama statute of limitations
If you intend to pursue the liable party for damages, then you must act within a specified timeframe known as the statute of limitations. Generally, this statute of limitations begins to run when you sustain the injuries in question. In Alabama, the statute of limitations for a personal injury claim is two years.
So, what happens if the statute of limitations period runs out? Well, with very few exceptions, you will typically forfeit your right to sue for damages if the statute of limitation runs out.
Alabama negligence laws
Alabama is a contributory fault state. Basically, this means that you may be barred from recovering damages if you contributed to the accident in any way.
Here is an illustration: say you were involved in a rear-end collision with Jon. However, while litigating your case, the court establishes that Jon stopped their car abruptly without signaling. But the court also establishes that you were tailgating Jon. In this case, the court may rule that whereas Jon was 90 percent responsible for the crash, your action (tailgating) contributed 10 percent to the accident. Thus, based on Alabama’s contributory negligence statute, you may be barred from recovering any damages.
A car accident can leave you hurt and confused. Learning more about Alabama personal injury laws can help you protect your rights and interests if you are involved in a car crash that is not your fault.