Car accidents are an unfortunate reality, and navigating the legal process following an accident can be confusing and stressful. As a personal injury attorney in Cleveland, Ohio, Paulozzi LPA has extensive experience with car accident cases, and our guide to the car accident process will help you navigate the events after a car accident in Ohio.
In the state of Ohio, car accident claims follow a “fault” system. This means that the person who caused the accident is financially responsible for the damages resulting from the collision. In most cases, this responsibility falls on the at-fault party’s insurance company.
However, if the responsible party is uninsured or underinsured, or if the damages exceed the limits of their insurance policy, a lawsuit may be necessary to recover the full amount of compensation to which the injured party is entitled.
A car accident lawsuit may be necessary under the following circumstances:
The process of filing a car accident lawsuit in Ohio involves several steps, including gathering evidence, filing a complaint, and litigating the case in court. Here’s a step by step guide:
An experienced attorney can provide invaluable guidance throughout the legal process. They understand Ohio car accident laws, have experience navigating the court system, and can develop effective legal strategies tailored to your case. Additionally, they can help you determine the full extent of your damages and negotiate with insurance companies to secure a fair settlement.
Compiling evidence to support your claim is essential to building a strong case. Key pieces of evidence to gather include:
Any other relevant evidence, such as traffic camera footage, dashcam videos, or expert testimony.
Your attorney will draft a complaint that outlines the details of the case, including the parties involved, a description of the accident, the legal basis for the claim, and the damages being sought. The complaint must be filed with the appropriate court and served to the defendant(s) according to Ohio’s procedural rules.
During the discovery process, both parties exchange information and evidence related to the case. This process may involve:
Before proceeding to trial, your attorney may attempt to negotiate a fair settlement with the defendant’s insurance company. This process often involves presenting evidence, evaluating the strength of each party’s case, and engaging in back-and-forth negotiations.
The goal is to reach an agreement that fairly compensates you for your damages without the need for a lengthy and costly trial. If both parties can agree on a settlement amount, the case concludes without going to court.
If a settlement cannot be reached, the case proceeds to trial. At trial, both sides will present their evidence and arguments to a judge or jury. A typical car accident trial may involve:
Keep in mind that trials can be lengthy, unpredictable, and emotionally draining. An experienced attorney will help you navigate the trial process and advocate for your best interests.
The statute of limitations for car accident lawsuits in Ohio is two years from the date of the accident. Missing this deadline may result in the dismissal of your case and the loss of your right to seek compensation. Therefore, it’s crucial to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your accident to ensure that you meet all relevant deadlines.
Having a lawyer with experience in car accident cases is crucial because they understand the nuances of Ohio law, can effectively navigate the legal system, and have a track record of success in securing fair compensation for their clients.
At Paulozzi LPA, our dedicated legal team will guide you through every step of the car accident lawsuit process. We will fight tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case and explore your legal options.