Suffering an injury in a serious car accident can be a stressful ordeal. A car accident can have many impacts on your life, like missing time at work and being faced with expensive medical bills. You should file your car accident case as soon as possible so that you can receive the compensation you deserve. If you or a family member was injured in a car accident, you should speak with an experienced Fayetteville car accident lawyer as soon as you can. The lawyers at Gunn Kieklak Dennis, LLP are prepared to represent you in your car accident case. Gunn Kieklak Dennis, LLP is here to explain the statute of limitations for car accident injury claims in Arkansas.
What is The Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Lawsuits in AR?
The statute of limitations dictates the amount of time that a person has to file a lawsuit.
Car accident cases fall under the umbrella of personal injury cases. This means you must look at the statute of limitations for personal injury cases to determine how long you have to file your car accident case. This same statute of limitations applies to a variety of accident cases, like commercial vehicle accidents involving shipping trucks or motorcycle accidents.
There are some situations where the statute of limitations in Arkansas can be delayed or tolled. One common reason to delay the statute of limitations deadline is that the plaintiff (suing party) suffers a “legal disability.” A disability could mean that the plaintiff is under the age of majority or has been judged mentally incompetent. All of these examples would operate to stop the clock on the statute of limitations. However, once a plaintiff is no longer legally disabled, the statute of limitations will begin to run again.
The Reasons for Statute of Limitations Laws
There are a few reasons why each state has statute of limitations laws for different types of civil cases. One reason why statute of limitations laws exist is to encourage plaintiffs to pursue their claims with reasonable speed and diligence. Allowing plaintiffs an unlimited amount of time to file their case may result in some individuals procrastinating and filing cases long after they suffered an injury, making some cases difficult to adjudicate.
Another reason for statutes of limitations is to prevent defendants from having to litigate a stale claim. If you believe that you could be a defendant in a civil case and the plaintiff takes an excessive amount of time to file their case, you could unfairly spend years looking over your shoulder for a case that may never be filed. Additionally, it is unreasonable to expect a defendant to store all evidence from a case that is five or 10 years old – or older.
Finally, allowing individuals to file car accident cases without restrictions could cause more harm than good. The defendant and other individuals involved in the case may have moved on from the event, and justice may not be served by unexpectedly dragging them into the case again.
What Happens if I File a Motor Vehicle Collision Claim Late?
If you do not file your car crash case by the allotted amount of time, the court may bar you from filing. This is why it is important to file your case as soon as possible. The statute of limitations only applies to the amount of time a person has to file a case, not to the amount of time a case will take to adjudicate. Therefore, once you file your car accident claim, you no longer need to worry about the statute of limitations. Filing your claim early also has other benefits that help with your case
Filing your case as soon as possible is likely to make your case easier to fight. For example, any witnesses will have a better memory of the events if the case begins quickly. Moreover, if you file your case too late, any evidence you need to prove your case could be lost or destroyed. Perhaps most importantly, you can get the compensation you need to help with monthly or medical bills sooner if you file early.
What to Do After a Car Crash
You should thoroughly document your car accident claim before filing it. While at the scene of the accident, you should record information that will help prove your case, such as:
- The license, registration, and insurance information for the other driver(s)
- Information about any injuries you, any passengers, or any other drivers sustained
- Any damages to your vehicle, the vehicle that struck you, or any other vehicles involved in the accident
- Any adverse weather conditions present when the accident occurred
You should also call law enforcement to the scene to investigate. Arkansas law requires you to report any car accident involving personal injury. After law enforcement completes its investigation, you should request a copy of the police report. You should also inform your insurance carrier of the accident as soon as possible.
Fayetteville, AR Car Crash Attorneys Can Help You Fight Your Case
If you or a family member suffered a serious injury in a car crash, you should speak with an experienced Fayetteville personal injury attorney today. The attorneys at Gunn Kieklak Dennis, LLP understand how a serious car accident can affect your life, and we are here to help you receive the compensation that you deserve. Our firm of legal professionals have extensive experience in handling various types of vehicle collision cases, and we will use this experience to fight for you. To schedule a confidential consultation regarding your case, call us at (479) 439-9840 or reach us online.