Indiana Car Accident Compensation Laws
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Indiana is known far and wide for the Indianapolis Speedway, where cars zoom around the track at harrowing speeds. If some spectators decide that a re-enactment seems like a good idea and you wind up injured as a result, you will be relieved to learn that parties not at fault have a good chance of recovering damages for their injuries. But with some speedy statutes of limitation, you will want to hurry up and get acquainted with Indiana car accident compensation laws.
'Fault' and 'Modified Comparative Negligence' Rules Apply
If you want an Indiana court to order another driver to compensate you for injuries suffered in a car accident, be prepared to prove that the other driver was at fault for the accident.
Worried you won’t be able to recover damages simply because you might be partially at fault for the accident? Do not fret. Indiana's negligence laws use the modified comparative fault rule and will allow you to recover as long as you were less at fault for the accident than the defendant. The court will simply reduce any recovery according to your level of fault in the accident. This means that if you suffered $10,000 in damages, but the court found that you were 10% at fault, you could still recover $9,000.
For more details regarding Indiana Car Accident Compensation Laws, see the table below.
Statute of Limitations
• 2 years (Indiana Code §34-11-2-4)
• 270 days for lawsuits against the State (Indiana Code §34-13-3-6)
• 180 days for lawsuits against a City or County (Indiana Code §34-13-3-8)
Limits on Damages
• $700,000 per person up to $5,000,000 total when the government is at fault (Indiana Code §34-13-3-4)
• Punitive damages limited to the greater of 3 times compensatory damages or $50,000 (Indiana Code §34-51-3-4)
Modified Comparative Negligence (Indiana Code 34-51-2-5, et seq.)
Indiana allows you to recover for both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include out-of-pocket expenses such as medical bills, wages lost from time away from work, and car repair bills. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are the losses you suffer that are harder to calculate, such as disfigurement, mental distress, and loss of consortium (available to family members of an injured party).
Some typical accident damages include:
- Vehicle repairs
- Hospital bills
- Medication co-pays
- Physical therapy costs
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
The state imposes a time limit, known as a statute of limitations, on how long you can wait before filing a lawsuit to recover damages. The time limit is two years for both injury to person and to property.
Fortunately for injured parties, there are only two limits on the amount of damages you can recover in Indiana. One is that punitive damages are limited to the greater of $50,000 or three times the amount of compensatory damages.
The other is that when the government is the party at fault, Indiana limits the compensation available to $700,000 per person, up to a total of $5,000,000 per accident. Additionally, Indiana rapidly accelerates the time limit, leaving injured parties only 270 days to file a case against the state, or 180 days against a city or county.
Need Help With Indiana Car Accident Compensation? Contact an Attorney
Indiana's lightning fast deadlines for filing a claim against the government could leave you without compensation for your injuries. Even if the party at fault for your damages was not a government representative, modified comparative negligence laws can make it tough to estimate how much you will be able to recover for your injuries. If you need help navigating Indiana car accident compensation laws, get in touch with an Indiana attorney.
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