A serious auto accident injury can result in disability and expensive medical bills. If someone else caused the accident, you can sue for damages. The court may order the person to pay for your lost wages and health care costs.
Review these rules for filing an auto accident injury lawsuit in Missouri.
Laws about fault
Missouri follows the pure comparative negligence law for auto accidents. If you share any fault for the accident, you can still sue the other driver for his or her fault amount.
For example, the court may say you had 20% of fault in the accident. They calculate $50,000 in damages. You will receive 80% of those damages, or $40,000.
The compensation process
You have a few options when another driver caused the accident. You can file a claim for financial damages through your auto insurance policy or the other driver’s insurance policy. You can also file a lawsuit.
The insurance company will send someone to investigate the accident. Their settlement offer may not cover the full cost of your injuries. The adjuster may say that you were also at fault. You have the right to have an attorney work with the insurance company. He or she can negotiate on your behalf and gather evidence to support your claim.
Missouri allows you to ask the court for economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages include the actual cost of medical treatment, travel for doctor’s appointments, vehicle repair or replacement, and loss of income. Noneconomic damages may include emotional distress, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering resulting from the accident.
You have five years to file a personal injury lawsuit after a Missouri auto accident. After this statute of limitations passes, the court will dismiss your case even with a valid claim. For this reason, you may want to act quickly if you can no longer work after this type of injury.