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A personal injury may already be costing you money and other things of personal value but there may be future losses as well. If you believe a third party was responsible for your injury and your losses, you may qualify for a personal injury lawsuit. However, personal injury litigation isn't as straightforward as saying “you injured me and I want compensation.”
If you've been injured in Indianapolis, Fort Wayne or Evansville, use LawInfo's Indiana personal injury articles to learn about the laws surrounding your case and to find a qualified attorney.
A statute of limitations limits how much time after an injury occurs that a plaintiff has to pursue legal action against a defendant. Once the statute “runs out,” a lawsuit cannot be pursued. Indiana's civil statute of limitations includes:
Indiana courts need to ensure that both the plaintiff and the defendant's rights are protected in personal injury litigation. The compensation that the plaintiff is awarded must be relative to the defendant's liability if they're at all liable.
For most personal injury lawsuits, a defendant's liability is based on negligence. A defendant's negligence is typically determined by four elements:
An Indiana court could also use the standard of care commonly referred to as the “reasonably prudent person.” Courts use this to judge the defendant's actions surrounding the injuring accident with those of a theoretical, responsible person in a similar situation. Any deviation from the actions of a reasonably prudent person could be judged as negligent.
A personal injury involving a healthcare provider and a physical injury is called medical malpractice. Medical malpractice lawsuits are governed by Indiana's Medical Malpractice Act and require special rules compared to other personal injury lawsuits.
Medical malpractice lawsuits are very serious because the healthcare provider's public credibility is at risk and the damages awarded can reach into the millions of dollars. However, there are limitations to the amount of damages a plaintiff can recover from these cases. Total damages cannot exceed:
Additionally, a healthcare provider that qualifies under the act's insurance program cannot be held liable for total damages exceeding:
Injuries cost money, including time away from work, medical bills and other complications. You should have an attorney help you with your claim. Not sure if you have a good injury case? Speak to a local personal injury attorney about the merits of your case. This one step can help you protect your rights and take the proper next steps.