Your reasons for wanting to sue will determine what kind of lawsuit you file. If you are suing on your own behalf—in other words, if you yourself were injured in the accident—then you can file a personal injury lawsuit. However, if your loved one passed away because of the accident and you are filing on their behalf, then you can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
According to Ohio law, you generally have two years to file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. For a personal injury case, the clock starts ticking on the date of your accident. For wrongful death cases, the clock starts ticking on the date of your loved one’s death.
The Statutes of Limitations in Ohio
A statute of limitations is a law that gives you a certain amount of time to file a lawsuit after an accident.
In Ohio, Ohio Revised Code (ORC) § 2305.10 generally gives you two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. Similarly, per ORC § 2125.02, you generally have two years from the date of your loved one’s passing to file a wrongful death suit.
If you wait too long and allow the statute of limitations in your case to expire before taking legal action, your lawsuit may be dismissed, and you may be unable to recover compensation for your damages.
Even if your goal is to recover compensation in an insurance settlement, acting within the statute of limitations and retaining your right to sue can be important in case the responsible party’s insurance company refuses to compensate you fairly.
Potentially Recoverable Damages in a Truck Accident Case
In general, accident victims may be allowed to sue for compensation for both financial losses (economic damages) and physical and mental injuries (non-economic damages).
Personal Injury Damages
Depending on the details of your case, the following damages may be recoverable in a personal injury lawsuit:
- Current and future accident-related medical expenses
- Loss of income, benefits, etc.
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Scarring or disfigurement
- And more
Wrongful Death Damages
Depending on the nature of your loved one’s death and your relationship with them, the following damages may be recoverable in a wrongful death lawsuit:
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of support and services
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of inheritance
- Mental anguish
- And more
Working with a Lawyer on Your Case
Although you have a right to file an insurance claim or lawsuit on your own, a truck accident lawyer may be able to manage all of the legal work in your case when they represent you. In general, an attorney can help you fight for compensation by:
- Investigating your accident: a lawyer can collect evidence (for example, medical records or surveillance footage) to back up your version of events. This may help persuade the responsible party’s insurance company to offer you a settlement. A lawyer can also collect evidence of your damages and their value to assign a fair settlement range to your case.
- Filing forms on time: a lawyer can handle all of the paperwork and deadlines in your case when they represent you.
- Communicating with the insurance company: it is understandable if the idea of confronting a big insurance company and their lawyers makes you nervous. A lawyer may be able to take care of all meetings and communications for you.
- Negotiating: your lawyer can fight for a fair settlement offer in negotiations with the responsible party’s insurance company. If negotiations hit a wall, your lawyer can take your case to trial.
- Advising you: a lawyer can answer your questions, help you assess the fairness of a settlement offer, and guide you through the legal process.
Call the Fitch Law Firm LLC Today
You do not need to face the aftermath of a truck accident alone. The Fitch Law Firm LLC can handle all of the legal work in your case when we represent you. We help clients with both personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Columbus, Ohio.
To learn more, call the Fitch Law Firm LLC at (614) 545-3930. We offer free case reviews to help you get started. A member of our team can discuss your accident, your legal options, and how long you may have to file a lawsuit after your truck accident.
The Fitch Law Firm LLC takes many cases on a contingency-fee-basis with no up-front payments required. Our attorney fees come from your settlement offer or court award, if and when you win your case.