If you’ve been injured in an accident, you may not know where to turn. You may be overwhelmed by medical expenses and are uncertain as to how you’re going to continue paying your bills if you’re taking time off work to heal. Fortunately, a Columbus personal injury lawyer can explain your rights and options to you, so you can work toward getting your life back in order.
At Bey & Associates, LLC, we strive to help our clients recover financially after an accident they were wrongfully put through. We understand the confusion and devastation accident victims face, especially when dealing with serious injuries. To ensure a financially stable future, we can help you build a strong claim that proves the opposing party caused your injuries and should be held accountable for their negligence.
Every personal injury claim is different, which is why we tailor how we collect evidence and build proof depending on the client’s situation. For every claim, however, it’s important to have an understanding of Ohio’s personal injury laws and how they operate. When we start with your claim, we’ll explain the applicable laws to you and make sure we abide by all of your legal obligations, so your recovery isn’t jeopardized.
Personal Injury Law in Ohio
Personal injury claims fall under civil litigation and arise when someone suffers harm from an accident or injury, and they believe someone else is legally responsible for that harm. Civil law revolves around private relations between members of the community, instead of legal issues relating to crimes, the military, or religious affairs.
When you’re looking to receive compensation for injuries and losses, the two likely outcomes of a case include an informal settlement or a formal lawsuit. Most claims result in an informal settlement, where the two parties negotiate terms and agree to forgo any further legal action. In the event a settlement can’t be reached for whatever reason, the injured party has the right to file a civil complaint to initiate a lawsuit. The outcome of a lawsuit is referred to as a verdict, which can be made by a judge or jury.
Personal injury laws are established at the state level, so it’s important to understand the unique laws that will apply to your claim. If you were injured in Ohio and are planning on filing a claim, you’ll want to start by understanding how the state views negligence and how much time you have to take action after an accident.
In the eyes of the law, negligence refers to the failure to exercise the degree of care required of a reasonable person in any given circumstances resulting in harm to someone else. In 1980, Ohio became the 35th state to establish a comparative negligence law. Comparative negligence considers both parties’ negligence when determining monetary awards.
In the event you’re in an accident where you’re found to be 20% at fault for what happened, your compensation will be reduced to 80% of the total value of the claim. So, even though you played a role in what happened, you’re still eligible for recovery. Prior to this law being enacted, contributory negligence was used. This meant that if you were found negligent at all, you would be ineligible for any amount of recovery.
Proving negligence is a four-part process. First, you have to establish the opposing party owed you a duty of care. Then, you need to explain how they breached that duty. A connection needs to be made between their breach and your accident. Finally, you have to prove you sustained losses as a result of the accident. Your lawyer will build a case that proves you were wronged and will fight to ensure the compensation you receive covers all of your losses.
Statute of Limitations
When you file a personal injury claim, it’s important to understand the filing limitations. The majority of claims are subject to statutes of limitations. A statute of limitations defines how long a person has to take legal action after being injured. The timeframe you have could differ depending on your accident and when you discovered your injuries, so it’s important to work with a Columbus attorney so you know just how long you have. In Ohio, claims are subjected to the following time limit considerations:
- Personal injury – two years
- Injury to personal property – two years
- Professional malpractice – one year
- Medical malpractice – one year to give notice, with a maximum of four years depending on the date of discovery.
Statutes of limitations exist because the court system recognizes that evidence loses its value as time passes. Failing to meet the statute of limitations will likely result in an inability to receive compensation. In the event you try to file after the time period has ended, the court has the right to dismiss your case without review.
Cases We Handle
While a personal injury claim can potentially evolve out of any situation involving injury and negligence, certain cases are more common than others. Among the most common are traffic accidents—the majority of which involves two passenger vehicles. However, Bey & Associates, LLC also regularly sees clients who are trying to handle the abuse of their loved one in a nursing home facility or physician negligence. Let’s take a look at some information about the most common personal injury cases we handle.
Car accidents in Columbus are most often the result of human error. According to Ohio’s Department of Public Safety, there were a total of 34,407 crashes in 2019 that resulted in injury or fatalities. Common causes included distractions like texting, speeding and other forms of reckless driving, and driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Car accidents have the potential to result in serious injuries like broken bones, internal bleeding, head trauma, and more. Often times, crash victims have to take time off work to recover. When you file a personal injury claim after an auto wreck, a Columbus car accident lawyer will determine what happened and why and what, if any, traffic laws were broken by the other driver.
While crashes involving tractor-trailers are not as common as those involving two passenger vehicles, they often result in more serious or even fatal injuries. Truck accidents can happen as a result of driver error, company negligence, or manufacturing defects. Determining liability for a semi crash is crucial, as it can be hard to obtain compensation without strong evidence—which is why it’s important to work with a Columbus truck accident lawyer.
When truck accidents result in catastrophic injuries, it’s possible the victim may be unable to ever return to their previous position. In the event of a necessary amputation or spinal cord injury, the person would have to relearn how to do common, everyday tasks. That type of physical trauma can have a serious impact on a person’s psyche.
Nursing Home Abuse
While placing a loved one in a nursing home isn’t always easy, it can improve their quality of life if they need regular or constant medical care. Unfortunately, not all nursing homes provide their residents with the care they need or deserve.
In the event you notice your loved one has unexplained injuries, is acting differently, or their finances are out of order, you should report your concerns to the nursing home and remove your loved one from the facility if you believe they are in danger. You can also file a report with Disability Rights Ohio, and they will conduct an investigation. Once your loved one is safe, it’s time to contact a Columbus nursing home abuse lawyer. They will help you determine what your loved one has experienced and if negligence played a role in their suffering.
If you’ve been injured by a doctor, nurse, or other medical professional and believe negligence played a role, filing a medical malpractice claim could provide you with the compensation you need to recover as quickly as possible.
Examples of medical malpractice include misdiagnosis, delays in treatment, surgical mistakes, birth injuries, and medication errors. Medical malpractice is among the most complex area of personal injury law, which means it’s crucial to work with an experienced lawyer in order to achieve a successful outcome.
In the event you’ve lost a loved one in one of the accidents discussed above, there may be grounds for a wrongful death claim. Under Chapter 2125.01 of the Ohio Revised Code, when the death of a person is caused by a wrongful or neglectful act, surviving family members have the right to pursue compensation on their behalf to help with related expenses and losses.
We understand how difficult it can be to consider pursuing a wrongful death claim while you’re grieving your loss. That’s why when you work with a Columbus personal injury lawyer, they will handle the paperwork and legal discussions, so you can spend time with your family and focus on healing.
The Benefits of Working With an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer
If you’ve suffered injures after an accident, your main focus should be on recovery. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to focus on your physical and mental wellbeing when you’re dealing with the financial consequences of the accident. If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries, working with a Columbus attorney can help you manage your recovery and take legal action while minimizing your stress and worry.
An experienced attorney knows what it takes to build a strong case. They will help you collect evidence, which could include accident reports, medical records, photographs, witness testimony, and expert opinions. With the right evidence and support for your claim, you won’t struggle to prove the opposing party was negligent.
In addition to helping you build your claim, your lawyer will also be able to properly value your claim. The value of your case will be based on your economic and noneconomic losses, which could include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, future expenses and losses, and more. With a properly valued claim, you won’t settle for less than you deserve, and your compensation will fully cover your losses.
No matter what type of accident you’ve been in or what injuries you’re dealing with as a result, it’s important to seek legal guidance. Even if you think you do not have a claim, reach out to Bey & Associates, LLC. With our comprehensive understanding of the law, we will know what your rights and options are and how you should proceed to secure your future.
The City of Columbus
As Ohio’s capital and the state’s most populous city, Columbus is known for being an exciting and ever-evolving city. The area’s diverse economy is based on education, banking, food, aviation, medical research, hospitality, retail, and technology—to name a few.
Whether you’re looking to spend the day at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, want to grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants downtown, or are attending a sporting event at The Ohio State University, residents and visitors alike can always find something to do in Columbus.
Bey & Associates, LLC is dedicated to helping personal injury victims in and around Columbus. While our Ohio office is located in Cincinnati, we believe all Ohio residents have the right to strong and experienced legal representation when they need it most. If you’ve been injured in Columbus and what to learn about your legal options, a personal injury attorney from our firm can evaluate your situation and help you decide what steps to take next.
Maximize Your Recovery With Bey & Associates, LLC
Choosing to handle a personal injury claim on your own could result in you receiving significantly less compensation than you deserve. That’s why we recommend working with a Columbus personal injury lawyer. When you team up with Bey & Associates, LLC, you’ll have access to a dedicated, knowledgeable, and resourceful legal team. Not only will we determine what you’re rightfully owed for your losses and suffering, but we’ll help you send a clear message to the opposing party that what they did was not right and should never have happened.
The actual process of filing a personal injury claim does take time. The sooner you get in touch with an attorney, the better your chances are of receiving a favorable outcome. Not only do you have to think about the statute of limitations running out, but it’s important to understand that evidence becomes less useful as time passes.
If you’re ready to take legal action and recover compensation for your accident, schedule a case evaluation with our lawyers today. We’ll review the circumstances of your accident and provide you with open and honest legal advice about what your options are and what actions we believe will give you the best chance of putting the accident behind you. Contact us today to learn more.