Nobody wants to be in a car accident, and we at McGuiness Law certainly hope that you never have to deal with one. However, vehicle accidents have been increasing (although deaths and serious injuries due to car accidents have decreased), and along with that increase comes a growing number of personal injury cases. According to 2018 statistics regarding motor vehicle accidents in Alberta, Friday is the weekday seeing the most collisions, and evening rush hour is the time that most of these occur.
So, if you ever happen to be involved and injured in a car accident, what do you need to know about filing a personal injury claim?
This may not be in the forefront of your mind if you’ve just been in an accident, but it’s important to consider the time that you have to file a claim. Different situations come with different time-frames, but generally, you have 2 years from the date of the accident to file a claim. There are some exceptions where you may be able to file a claim up to a maximum of 10 years after the date of the accident, but this only applies if you did not know that you were injured due to the car accident until some time has passed. Due to the nature of car accidents, the two-year statute of limitations generally applies.
There are some factors that could extend or reduce this time frame. For example, if your insurance company did not pay you after your car accident when they should have, and you wish to sue them directly, you will have just 1 year to do so. If the injured individual is a minor, the clock on the time limit will not start to tick until they’ve turned 18. So, a minor would have until the age of 20 to file a personal claim. If the injured individual is disabled, the limitation period does not apply until the disability has passed.
There are circumstances that greatly shorten the two-year limit on being able to file a claim. If you are in a car accident that involves the municipality, you have only 30 days to let the municipality know. If you were in a hit-and-run accident and the other driver is unknown, you have just 90 days to notify the Motor Vehicle Accidents Fund.
It can be confusing to know which time limit applies to your specific situation, whom to contact, and how to navigate paperwork, phone calls, and other communication that needs to take place to ensure that you receive the full compensation that you are due. On top of that, you are likely dealing with emotional stress, pain, and other issues that you should be able to prioritize.
It is important to us that you are dealt with fairly and receive the maximum compensation possible and that all of this is done in a timely manner. You can contact McGuiness Law toll-free at 1-833-662-2624, or connect with us via our website. We are happy to provide you with a free consultation, and you are not obligated to commit to anything.
In the meantime, we wish everyone safe travels!