This is a three-part article on personal injury and the legal process of a personal injury claim in the State of Indiana. Part one presents basic information on personal injury and personal injury claims and lawsuits. Part two presents alternative methods for resolving personal injury claims in the State of Indiana, and part three explains the process of filing a personal injury lawsuit in Indiana to seek compensation and damages for your physical and emotional injuries.

What is Personal Injury?

Personal injury is the legal term for any harm or damage done to your body, mind or emotions. Personal injury happens when you are physically or psychologically harmed or damaged because of the negligence, reckless actions, or intentional misbehavior of another person or group. Personal injury can happen anywhere. You can be injured in a car crash or accident, in a motorcycle accident, while you are on the job, when you use a faulty or dangerous product, because of medical malpractice, a fall, or an animal attack, including dog bites. If you are injured because of an accident caused by the negligent, reckless, or intentional misconduct of another person or group in the State of Indiana, you may be able to recover damages. Damages can help compensate you for the losses you have suffered, such as medical costs, pain and suffering, and the loss of past and future income.

Do I have a Personal Injury Claim?

You should consult with a personal injury attorney to determine whether you have a personal injury claim, but the following types of injuries generally fall under the category of personal injury: automobile accidents or crashes, motorcycle wrecks, and semi or truck accidents, hit and run crashes, dog bites, and medical malpractice or negligence, dog or animal bites, and slip and falls. There is a legal standard for deciding if your personal injury claim is actionable. In other words, before you can file a personal injury lawsuit, you must have an adequate legal reason to justify your claim. First, your personal injury must have happened because of the negligent, reckless, or intentional misconduct of another person or group. Second, the person or group responsible for causing your injuries must owe you a duty of ordinary or reasonable care. This means that the person or other group responsible for causing your injuries had an obligation to treat you carefully with attention and concern for your well-being.

What is a Personal Injury Claim or Personal Injury Law Suit?

If you have suffered a personal injury, you might be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. A personal injury lawsuit is claim against the person or other group responsible for causing your injuries. Your personal injury claim will be filed in a civil court, not a criminal court. Criminal courts hear criminal cases brought by the government against someone who has broken the law. If you are found guilty of breaking the law in a criminal court, the court will decide on your punishment. Civil courts handle many matters, including personal injury or tort claims filed to recover damages and to provide compensation to you for your physical or emotional injuries or damages to your property.

What is the Statute of Limitations or How long do You have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

It depends on your personal circumstances, but generally, you have two years from the date of the injury, accident, or wreck to file a personal injury claim. In Indiana, this period is called the Statute of Limitations. For example, if you are injured on January 1, 2014, you will need to file your personal injury claim by January 1, 2016. In most cases, if you do not file your personal injury claim within this two year period, you will not be allowed to file your claim at a later time. If your personal injury happened as a result of the negligence of a city, county or other government agency, the Statute of Limitations may be only 180 or 270 days. If you have questions about the Statute of Limitations that applies to your situation, or if you are concerned that you are running out of time to file your claim, please consult a personal injury attorney immediately.

Find a Great Personal Injury Attorney

A personal injury can happen anywhere, and the consequences can be devastating. Damages can help compensate you for the losses you have suffered, such as medical expenses, pain and suffering, and the loss of past and future income. A great personal injury lawyer will help you find the best strategy for settling, trying, and collecting the compensation that you are entitled to because of the negligent, reckless, or intentional misconduct of anther person or party. If you think you have suffered a personal injury, contact a lawyer as soon as possible.