Should I Wait to File a Personal Injury Suit Due to COVID-19?
Even with the pandemic stay-at-home directive in Utah, accidents can still occur in the workplace, in a grocery store, or while running errands. A personal injury attorney can help injured parties recover damages from such accidents when caused by another person or entity’s negligence.
Sometimes the best course of action to recover damages is filing a personal injury lawsuit, but should you wait to file a personal injury suit due to COVID-19? Servicing clients in Utah, the Salt Lake City, law firm of Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC encourages accident victims to act promptly and remain available for consultations during this unprecedented time.
The Statute of Limitations Clock Is Running
In regard to personal injury claims, a statute of limitations is the amount of time parties have to begin legal proceedings. It starts from the date of an injury or the date an injury was discovered. If legal proceedings are not started before the statute of limitations expires, a case cannot be brought to a court of law.
Although many things are on hold due to COVID-19, the statute of limitations in a personal injury case is not one of them. Once the clock starts, it does not stop. Because of this, it is important not to delay filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Taking a Realistic View of the Pandemic
In addition to beating the clock on the statute of limitations, it’s important to keep in mind that we don’t know how long the pandemic will last. It may be some time before we return to normal, even with the push for vaccinations.
Many injury victims need financial relief for recent medical bills, lost wages, and suffering immediately. Waiting because of COVID-19 will delay financial relief when it’s needed most.
COVID-19 Precautions and Court Delays
Some routine things take longer to accomplish due to the precautions necessary to stay as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes the civil litigation process. For example, court hours may be changed, the number of trials heard during a week may be further limited, and quarantines for virus exposure may all affect how quickly a settlement is reached.
Filing a personal injury lawsuit will help lead to a case resolution sooner, even with delays from these safety precautions.
Insurance Companies May Pressure You to Settle
Insurance companies may be more likely to pressure accident victims to settle. In such cases, insurance representatives will take advantage of the current COVID-19 situation, and use it as leverage to avoid trial or paying a fair settlement.
Filing a personal injury lawsuit allows you to be in control of the process, with legal guidance from attorneys who put your best interests first.
Possible Job Loss
While there are certain legal protections regarding workplace injuries and job termination, it is possible to lose your job for other reasons while recovering from an injury. Right now, COVID-19 has impacted many professions and has resulted in massive unemployment across the country.
Even if you’re employed and become injured, there may be job uncertainty to consider. In such cases, filing a personal injury claim as soon as possible can help alleviate unforeseen financial burdens before they become an issue.
Learn More About Your Legal Options
If you live in Utah and have been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your injuries through a personal injury lawsuit. To learn more about your legal options, please call (801) 335-6467 to schedule a consultation online.