There is a time limit, known as the statute of limitations, that affects how long you have to file a personal injury lawsuit in court after an injury. It’s important to keep this deadline in mind, because if you don’t get your lawsuit filed in court before the three-year window closes, you’ll almost certainly lose your right to have the matter heard in court.
Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia are shared fault jurisdictions which means that if a claimant or plaintiff shares some of the fault for the accident that resulted in the injury, they can be prevented from recovering damages.
Here’s an example. Suppose you’re driving a few miles per hour above the speed limit in D.C. You go through an intersection with a green light, but an oncoming driver makes a left right in front of you. Eventually, the amount of fault assigned to the other driver works out to 90 percent, and the amount of fault assigned to you is 10 percent.
Under a contributory fault law, your damages award drops to zero automatically once the court enters a finding of fault. The result is that you cannot collect damages from any other at-fault party.
If you were injured in an accident, you should consult with an attorney to evaluate your case and to discuss other special circumstances that may apply to your case, such as damage caps, dog bites, personal injury protection insurance laws and minimum coverage requirements.