Sometimes leaving a car accident to insurance companies will provide you with the necessary compensation to cover all your expenses. From medical bills to car damage, an accident can cost thousands, and if the other driver is underinsured or uninsured, it could cost you even more. This is when litigation becomes a viable alternative.
In court you can force the other parties to cover your expenses through a legal ruling and finally cover your various damages. Filing a lawsuit for a car accident should not be a choice taken lightly. Therefore, you should be up to date with much of the laws regarding car accident suits and always consult an experienced attorney before moving forward with litigation.
Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases in Tennessee
The statutes of limitations for bringing a case to court in Tennessee following a car accident are as follows:
- For any case involving personal injuries, you have one year following the date of the accident (§ 28-3-104).
- For any case involving property or vehicle damage, you have up to three years from the date of the accident to file (§ 28-3-105)
Failing to file your lawsuit within these timelines will most likely result in the case being thrown out. Be aware that these statutes of limitations only apply to civil court actions, not insurance claims or any criminal actions relating to the car accident.
These limits do not apply to car accidents involving government employees or property. If you get in an accident with a government vehicle and wish to sue, you need to file an administrative claim for the instance. The statute of limitations are shorter in these cases, so you must file quickly after the accident.
Modified Comparative Fault Rule in Tennessee
The modified comparative fault rule is the framework for adjudicating damages in after a car accident or other personal injury claims in Tennessee. The rule takes into account the percentage of fault each party is responsible for the accident. Whoever holds less than half of the fault will receive a favorable settlement but their damages will be reduced based on the amount of fault they hold.
This means that if you are 40 percent responsible for the accident, you will only receive 60 percent of your damages. So if you hold 50 percent or more of the fault then your reward drops to more and you may have to pay the other party. Most car accidents do not have a single party that bares the entire responsibility for the accident, so the rule is a good way to determine damages for complicated accidents.
While this is a codified rule for civil cases, insurers in Tennessee keep this rule in mind when seeking claim settlements.
Contact a Nashville Car Accident Attorney
If you were the victim or perpetrator of a hit and run accident, a skilled Nashville car accident attorney is absolutely necessary to deal with the ensuing legal battle. Whether you are seeking damages or trying to protect yourself against charges, a lawyer can make all the difference.