The fact that accidents are fairly commonplace does not detract from the pain and confusion that can result when an accident or injury happens to you or a loved one. No matter what injury results from the accident, you must protect your legal rights. Navigating the legal injury claim process is complicated. You need an experienced lawyer to help.
The lawyers at Surber, Asher, Surber & Moushon have handled personal injury cases for over 20 years. Combined, they have almost 100 years of litigation experience. They will protect and fight for your rights.
Below is some general information about personal injury cases.
What is a “Personal Injury” Case?
“Personal injury” cases are legal disputes that arise when one person suffers harm from an accident or injury, and someone else might be legally responsible for that harm. A personal injury case can become formalized through civil court proceedings that seek to find others legally at fault through a court judgment or, as is much more common, such disputes may be resolved through informal settlement before any lawsuit is filed:
- Formal “Lawsuit” Unlike criminal cases, which are initiated by the government, a formal personal injury case typically starts when a private individual (the “plaintiff”) files a civil “complaint” against another person, business, corporation, or government agency (the “defendant”), alleging that they acted carelessly or irresponsibly in connection with an accident or injury that caused harm. This action is known as “filing a lawsuit”.
- Informal Settlement In reality, most disputes over fault for an accident or injury are resolved through informal early settlement, usually among those personally involved in the dispute, their insurers, and attorneys representing both sides. A settlement commonly takes the form of negotiation, followed by a written agreement in which both sides forgo any further action (such as a lawsuit), choosing instead to resolve the matter through payment of an agreeable amount of money.
Where are the Laws that Govern Personal Injury Cases?
Unlike other areas of the law that find their rules in statutes (such as penal codes in criminal cases), the development of personal injury law has taken place mostly through court decisions, and in treatises written by legal scholars. Many states have taken steps to summarize the development of personal injury law in written statutes, but for practical purposes court decisions remain the main source of the law in any legal case arising from an accident or injury.
What is a Statute of Limitations?
Plaintiffs have a limited time in which to file a lawsuit, called a “Statute of Limitations.” This is the period of time dictated by a statute within which a person must file suit. f limitations begins when the plaintiff is injured or discovers the injury.
Statutes of limitations are established by state law and often vary by type of injury. For instance, the Statute of Limitations for most injuries to an individual in Tennessee is one year. Slander is even shorter – sixth months. Tennessee has one of the shortest Statute of Limitations in the country.
Because of the short time in which you must file a lawsuit for personal injury in Tennessee, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon after the injury as possible. The lawyer needs time to investigate the events leading up to the injury, so do not wait. Call Joel Surber today at (615)997-1921 for a free evaluation of your potential case.