Going through an accident can change your life forever. As a personal injury victim, you would naturally want to hold the liable parties accountable for your losses and fight for compensation. Fortunately, you can do this by filing a personal injury lawsuit. As you will learn through this article, this may be the best way to get fair, just compensation for your losses. However, you may wonder if there is a way you can file a personal injury twice after your accident in Arkansas. Our Fayetteville, AR personal injury attorney Ken Kieklak invites you to keep reading as we discuss this critical question.
Can I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit Twice in Arkansas?
Every day, thousands of people are injured in different types of accidents. It is not uncommon for injured victims to seek compensation from those liable for their accident. Typically, if you want to pursue compensation, you can file a personal injury claim in Arkansas. Through this process, you can hold the liable parties accountable for all of your losses. You can achieve this in two ways. First, you can file your claim and take your case to court, where a jury of your peers will determine whether your case has merit and how much it will be worth. Second, you can enter into a settlement negotiation with the other party. Either way, you are fighting for the compensation that reflects your losses and helps you recover after your accident.
However, you may wonder whether you can file a personal injury twice in Arkansas. When you settle your claim, you will likely be required to sign a release agreement where you agree to refrain from pursuing additional legal action against the party with whom you settled. Typically, this type of arrangement is legally-binding, which means you must abide by what the written contract says. However, what happens if you took your case to court the first time? Taking your case to court means you need to prove the elements of your claim (which we discuss further below), and the courts may have granted you compensation. In this case, once you have already been compensated for your losses, you may not sue the defendants again for the same reasons. Nevertheless, if there are other parties involved in your claim, you may sue them for the same reasons.
It is important to keep in mind that while a settlement bars you from taking the liable parties to court, there may be situations that can invalidate the settlement, giving you the chance to file a formal lawsuit:
The general rule is thatyou cannot file a claim against the same party for the same accident once you have settled. However, there are exceptions to this rule. You may sue the at-fault party if you can prove they acted fraudulently when entering into the settlement negotiation. With your Arkansas personal injury attorney’s assistance, you can challenge the settlement contract’s legitimacy and prove whether fraud took place during settlement.
When both parties enter into settlement negotiations, they should do so without being forced. Both contracting parties must be able to negotiate freely. Any kind of coercion can render the contract or settlement invalid. If there was coercion involved in your settlement, you can still file a personal injury lawsuit against the liable party after your accident.
When settling a personal injury case in Arkansas, the contracting parties must act in good faith. Otherwise, the settlement process would not be fair, and you would have the right to sue. For example, if the other party’s insurance company refuses to settle for an amount resembling similar cases to yours – for no apparent reason – they would be acting in bad faith, thus giving you the right to pursue a lawsuit.
How Do I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Arkansas?
To file a personal injury claim in Arkansas, you must follow specific rules. As a plaintiff, you have to file your claim within the time frame known as the “statute of limitations.” The amount of time you will have to file your lawsuit with the court will depend on your specific circumstances. For example, if you were in a car accident, Arkansas’ statute of limitations provides you with three years from the moment of your accident to file your claim. If you miss this window, you may lose your chance of fighting for compensation. Our Springdale, AR personal injury attorneys can help you avoid missing your filing deadline.
Once you have met the statute of limitations requirements and filed your claim, the other party will be “served,” which means they will get a copy of your lawsuit against them. Once served, the court will schedule a date to hear your case. Once in court, you will get your chance to prove your case and fight for your compensation.
How Much Compensation Can I Get for My Personal Injury Claim in Arkansas?
As we mentioned, you may not be able to file a personal injury twice in Arkansas. This is the reason why having skilled, competent, and experienced legal representation is necessary. As a plaintiff, you have the burden of showing the other party’s negligence. Your ability to prove negligence will determine whether you can get compensation.
Every personal injury case is different, which is why determining the exact value of your claim before going to court may be challenging. The jury will be responsible for deciding how much your case is worth based on your case’s specific circumstances and the evidence you show. Typically, you will need to prove four main elements in your claim to get compensation. These elements are known as the duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages or losses.
Every single element in your claim must be supported by evidence. Once you have shown these elements’ existence, the court may grant you compensation for your losses, which may include your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. You may not be able to sue twice for the same personal injury. However, hiring an experienced Greenland, AR personal injury attorney can help you maximize your compensation.
Arkansas Personal Injury Attorneys Offering Free Consultations
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident in Arkansas, you need to hire an attorney immediately. Our Farmington, AR personal injury attorneys from the law offices of Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, can help you navigate Arkansas’ complex personal injury process. Thanks to decades of experience, we have developed the necessary skills to help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Call our law offices today and schedule your free, confidential consultation with Ken Kieklak. Our phone number is (479) 316-0438.
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