In Iowa, the statute of limitations for a car accident is two years. This means that you have two years from the day of the accident to file a lawsuit for the accident. The plaintiff loses their chance once that period has passed, and the defendant is off the hook.
For car accidents, missing the filing deadline may come easier than envisioned. When you try to resolve the matter with insurance adjusters, the statute of limitation is still running.
The negotiations period also has nothing to do with the filing deadline. So, to take advantage, the plaintiff must file the suit within the statute of limitations period. It does not matter if the total lawsuit takes longer than that period to be settled. So long as the plaintiff filed within that period, they have the legal potential to recover.
Lawsuits Pertaining to Personal Injury
Under Iowa Code Section 614.1, a personal injury victim has two years from the date of the accident to file suit for injuries sustained to their body. Therefore, anyone personally injured due to the accident has two years to file. This includes drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and bystanders.
Lawsuit Pertaining to Wrongful Death
The same two-year period applies to victims who died due to a car accident. The only difference is that the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases starts to run on the day of death instead of the accident date. Depending on the situation, this may be a slightly longer time frame.
Lawsuit Pertaining to Personal Property Lost
Iowa is more lenient when it comes to recovering personal property. Under Iowa Code Section 614.1, a victim whose personal property was damaged due to a car accident has five years from the date of the accident to file suit.
Personal property includes damages to the car, bicycle, home, and other concrete items. So, if the victim missed the personal injury deadline to file suit, they may still be able to take advantage of the longer personal property deadline.
How Do I Choose the Right Auto Accident Lawyer?
Suppose you have been involved in an auto accident or have been hurt in an accident and would like to pursue a personal injury claim. In that case, a car wreck attorney can heavily impact the outcome of your case. Generally speaking, an auto accident attorney would be a personal injury lawyer specializing in car accidents. They should be experienced in auto accident cases and experienced in handling cases similar to yours. It is also essential to choose an attorney you trust and affordable given your specific finances.
Auto accident attorneys will decide how best to represent you by examining the facts of your case. They will review documentation and apply their knowledge of local personal injury laws. Additionally, the lawyer will protect your rights while ensuring you thoroughly understand how you may also be at fault. They will work to lessen any fines or penalties you may be facing.
After meeting with a lawyer and discussing your case, you will be better prepared to decide whether to hire them.
After the meeting, ask yourself the following questions:
- Am I comfortable working with this lawyer on my case?
- Do I think they have the knowledge and talents necessary to handle my case?
- Did they explain the issues surrounding my case in a way that I understood? Did they speak in
- legal terms I didn’t comprehend?
- Do I understand the suggested fee arrangement for handling my case?
There are a few methods that you may use when seeking an attorney for your auto accident case. A Google search will likely be many people’s first course of action, as it is quick and yields several results at once. Asking individuals you know if they have anyone they may recommend is another widespread way of finding and choosing an attorney. Looking up a few people in the phone book is less common but still effective.
However, LegalMatch may prove the best option when asking how to choose the right auto accident attorney. We will provide you with several lawyers in your area who are ready and qualified to take on cases such as yours.
Why Do I Need an Auto Accident Attorney? What Should I Look For in an Automobile Accident Attorney?
Once you have been involved in an auto accident and have suffered injuries, you may pursue a lawsuit and hire an attorney. The best time to hire an attorney after an accident is early on. This is to avoid any expensive errors that can harm your potential damages. The deadline for filing a personal injury claim varies from state to state. Nevertheless, because your medical costs and lost wages might add up, it is best to contact an attorney sooner than later.
If you have been involved in an auto accident and you have suffered damages because of that accident, it is recommended that you hire an attorney. Because an auto accident lawyer can heavily impact the outcome of your case, this is the primary reason to ensure you find the right lawyer for your case.
An experienced auto accident attorney can assist you in getting the damages that you have lost in the auto accident, such as medical costs, lost wages, and car restorations. In some states, hiring an attorney for an auto accident case may help you recover when a loved one is killed. Another reason to hire an attorney is that insurance companies retain a team of experienced legal experts charged with restricting your damages. If you are not adequately represented, your damages can be very limited.
It would be best to choose the correct lawyer for your specific case. Some criteria to evaluate when selecting a lawyer for an auto accident case could include:
- Experience: you may find it helpful to hire an attorney with experience in handling similar cases like yours. They can refer to those past experiences when determining how best to approach your case and can provide examples of past successes;
- Focus: you may wish to find an attorney mainly focused on your case and not juggling multiple cases at once. Nonetheless, keep in mind that most lawyers are perfectly capable of satisfactorily handling multiple cases at once;
- Reputation: the overall reputation of the lawyer regarding negotiating with insurance companies can play a significant key in the amount of damages you receive. An attorney should have an excellent local reputation as well; and
- Personality: you must choose an attorney you can get along with and trust through the process. You will need to be completely honest and upfront with your lawyer while trusting them during a likely powerless time. If you feel that you cannot have a positive relationship with them, find another one. Many attorneys are happy and willing to help you, so be sure to find the right one that fits your needs.
Consulting a Lawyer
You should consult a Iowa car accident attorney if you have an issue resolving your car accident case. Even if you are uncertain whether you will benefit from filing a lawsuit, a personal injury lawyer can represent you in your negotiations with the insurance company. Experienced negotiators may help you get a larger settlement amount than trying yourself.