If you are involved in a car accident in Washington, D.C, you may need the help of an experienced attorney to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Car Accidents in Washington D.C. – What Happens
If you are in a auto accident in Washington, D.C., you probably are wondering what you should do. After seeking medical care, alerting the police and calling your insurance company, you may wonder what will happen if your insurance does not cover the costs of your accident injuries. Let’s look at some of the critical questions people ask.
Is Washington, D.C. a No-Fault State?
Yes, it is. That means that the recovery of damages after a car accident will reside with the injured individual’s own insurance company for many residents. This is because no-fault means that you do not need to assign fault to a negligent party to be compensated.
Can I Go Outside of the No-Fault System?
On some occasions, you can go outside of the no-fault system. When your case fits into such exempted areas, you are able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the party who caused the accident.
For some individuals, their personal injury protection policy limits are too low to cover their damages. This includes medical expenses such as transportation to the E.R., cost of medical care in the emergency room, tests, X-rays and medication, hospitalization, doctors’ fees and surgery costs. It also needs to cover lost wages the individual suffers due to their injury.
Are There Other Reasons I Can File a Personal Injury Lawsuit After an Auto Accident in the District?
Yes. These include the following:
- Permanent impairment
- Significant permanent scarring
- An impairment that persists for 180 days or more
Is There a Deadline to File an Auto Accident Lawsuit?
If you fall into the exemptions described above, you have a limited time to file. This deadline is called a statute of limitation. In Washington, D.C., the deadline is three years. This includes harm caused to the person or to property.
What Happens If a Government Agency Is Involved?
There are times a resident of Washington, D.C. is injured by a government agency. This can include a slip and fall in a government building or an auto accident caused by someone driving a government vehicle. It can also be from poor road maintenance by a city agency.
In such circumstances, a claim must be filed with the government agency in order to proceed. The timeline for doing this is different from other personal injury lawsuits. A personal injury lawyer will ensure that all documents are filed on time.
Contributory Negligence in an Auto Accident
The law in Washington, D.C. is not lenient when an injured party partly caused the accident. In other words, if you were partly at fault for the accident, in Washington, D.C., you are unable to recover damages. This is called the rule of contributory negligence. Even if your financial damages are high, you will receive no compensation if you were responsible for the accident to even a small degree.
Roeser Law Firm
If you are involved in a car accident in Washington, D.C, you may need the help of an experienced attorney to obtain the compensation you deserve. Call the Roeser Law Firm at (202) 660-4070. My staff will schedule a free case review, where you will be able to have your questions answered and obtain your options moving forward. You can also reach out to us online. Don’t go it alone. Let us help you through this difficult time.