If you got into a car crash and have some serious bills to pay as a direct result, then a lawsuit might be a viable option for you. However, lawsuits are not the best choice in every case or even in every state. Laws can vary dramatically from state to state, which means that you need to know exactly how your state will treat to your case. To help you out with that, here are some such laws that will come into play when filing a car accident lawsuit in Oregon:
Oregon is an at-fault state when it comes to auto insurance, which is quite different from no-fault insurance.
In at-fault insurance states, you have the option to file a lawsuit after any auto accident. If your lawsuit fails or if you decide that you don't want to file a lawsuit at all, then you can pursue an insurance claim. To give you even more choices, you can actually choose whether you want to file the claim with your own insurance company or the other party's insurance company.
In no-fault states, you cannot file a lawsuit after most car accidents. You will be forced to pursue an insurance claim instead, unless you meet some very specific criteria. On the other hand, if your car accident resulted in some extremely serious injuries that will impact you for life, then you can file a lawsuit.
This distinction means that Oregon gives you a lot more versatility and leeway than other states when it comes to car accidents and lawsuits.
Statute of Limitations
Car accident lawsuits usually fall under the personal injury category, but if someone died, then a wrongful death lawsuit would be more fitting. In many states, these have the same statute of limitations, but in Oregon, the limits are 2 and 3 years respectively for personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits.
This means that you will need to file your lawsuit fairly quickly. If you fail to do so, then your case could be shot down before it even has a chance to prove itself in court. There are some extenuating circumstances that you might qualify for, such as being a minor at the time of the accident or sustaining injuries that didn't show themselves until many years after the accident.
In either of those cases, the statute of limitations begins counting from the date that you can really file the lawsuit. For minors, that means the date that you legally become an adult, and for discovered injuries, that tends to mean the date of discovery. Contact a personal injury lawyer for more help.