“When does a claim exist?” is a question that often arises for people who have been injured in a car or other motor vehicle accident. That question actually addresses two issues, so let’s review both.
Lawsuits & Insurance Claims
This two different questions are:
- Do I have a claim?
- When should I make or file the claim?
Do I have a claim?
Technically, a claim comes into existence the moment someone becomes civilly liable to a person. In the context of an auto accident case, once someone has negligently, (or recklessly or intentionally for that matter) caused an accident, a legal claim exists. Anyone involved in the accident would have a legal claim generally speaking. However, simply because someone has been negligent, does not mean that a viable claim exists or, in other words, that a claim should be made. For example, if someone were to bump into the back of your car, but it was just a tap that was barely even noticeable and absolutely no damage was done, a claim technically exists. However, since there is nothing to recover, as a practical matter, there is no use in making a claim because the offending party, while legally responsible, would not have anything to repay. Another way to think of it is: Is it worth while suing somebody and winning, but winning nothing.
Damages in a claim
The most important factor when deciding when a claim exists, then, is damages. Once you have been the victim in an auto accident and has incurred damages such as an injury to her person (personal injury) then a viable claim exists.
So the most practical answer to the question is:
A claim exists when you have suffered an injury.
A claim also exists if some other damage such as damage to her vehicle. However, a personal injury constitutes the most valuable part of any claim in an auto accident and is often the determinative factor when deciding whether to retain an attorney. So, the best rule of thumb is, if you have been injured and it is even partially someone else’s fault, you likely have claim worth pursuing.
When do i file to recover for my claim?
The second part of the question is entirely different. When a claim comes into existence and when you make or file or claim are two completely different matters.
General rule for filing claims
The general rule of thumb is:
When you know the extent and cost of all of your damages, or can reasonably predict the extent and cost, it is likely time to move forward with a claim.
The Spokane, Washington Law Firm of Robert Hahn is one of the leading firms in the area of Personal Injury Law. Our personal Injury clients have the peace of mind in knowing that their case is being handled by an experienced Plaintiffs injury attorney. Our aggressive representation and extensive experience has earned the firm of Robert C. Hahn, III, a stellar reputation for excellence in the representation of injured people. Robert Hahn’s goal is to provide excellent service by a highly experienced lawyer and legal professionals at an affordable fee.
After helping hundreds of injured people ranging from complex litigation to simple settlement of claims in Spokane and surrounding areas, Spokane Attorney Robert Hahn has the background to explain your alternatives and suggest a solution to your injury difficulties.If you are considering hiring a personal injury attorney, make sure that the attorneys you are considering practice in personal injury law because you need a law firm that deals with these issues on a daily basis.
Let’s Talk About How We Can Help
Our office is located in the Spokane Valley, with easy access off I-90. Our clients know us and our staff by first names — in fact, some clients stop by to visit even after their case is over. We want to get to know you, in order to better serve you, so call us for your first consultation with a personal injury attorney.
Please call us today at our Spokane office at 509.921.9500 or send an email. Your initial consultation in Spokane with a personal injury attorney is free.