Personal Injury Law in Alabama
A personal injury can negatively affect all aspects of a victim’s life and can result in higher costs other than just medical bills. Related results can include lost wages, emotional trauma, pain and suffering, difficulty handling everyday tasks, and possibly a long and difficult road to recovery.
Where to File Your Claim in Alabama
A personal injury lawsuit should be filed in the same area where the injury occurred. There can be exceptions, but for example, if a personal injury occurred in Birmingham, then the claim should be filed in a court of Birmingham’s district.
The Statute of Limitations
It is very important to note that time is of the essence when filing a personal injury claim in Alabama. The statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years; a claimant has just two years after an injury occurs to file a lawsuit.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Once an individual decides to file a personal injury lawsuit, this process is just beginning. Usually 30 days after a complaint is filed, the defendant will be served with the appropriate documents. The defendant then has the chance to file a response before more formal procedures begin.
Personal Injury Damages in Alabama
In Alabama, personal injury judgments may include costs for:
- Lost wages and potential future earnings
- Medical bills related to the incident
- Property loss or damage
- Pain and suffering
- Cost to hire help for household tasks, if needed
- The circumstances of each personal injury case are different, and can result in different kinds of damage claims.
Contributory Negligence in Alabama
Alabama is a pure contributory negligence state which means that under this strict doctrine, a claimant cannot collect damages for a personal injury if he or she was even partially at fault for the incident.
The Discovery Process
While in the discovery phase, both parties may exchange interrogatories, or questions in writing. The defense may request medical records or even may ask the plaintiff to be examined by a physician of their choosing. It is during the discovery phase that expert witnesses can be called to testify.
Settling Through Mediation
Parties may move toward negotiating a settlement or taking the matter to trial, depending on the case. Another option, mediation, is where an unbiased third party mediator determines a fair resolution of the case.