When we’re young, our parents teach us how to drive. We study hard and take our driver’s test. Nowhere on that test does it ask you what you’re supposed to do if you get into a car accident. People don’t like to think about this kind of stuff. The truth is that it’s important that you know exactly how to handle this kind of situation. At some point, most of us are involved in some sort of motor vehicle accident. Thankfully, these accidents are usually minor fender-benders. Perhaps someone hits the back of your car at a red light. Or you may back into someone in a busy parking lot. If something like this happens to you, it’s a good idea to call an experienced car accident attorney in Irvine.
One of the trickiest things about getting into a car crash is knowing when to file your insurance claim. It’s also hard to know when it’s time to pull the trigger and file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver. That’s why we’re here. We help our clients file their insurance claims on time. And, if need be, we also make sure their lawsuit is filed before the statute of limitations runs out.
Here, we’ll talk about how long you have to file your car accident claim. Since it can be confusing to keep your insurance claim and your legal claim separate, we’ll talk about both filing deadlines. If you still have questions after reading this article, don’t hesitate to give us a call. You can schedule your free, initial consultation right over the phone.
It’s Not Always Clear How Long You Have to File Your Insurance Claim
One of the frustrating things about dealing with the aftermath of a car accident is the insurance company. It can be hard to determine just how long you have to report your claim. Most insurance companies don’t give you a specific timeframe in which you have to file your claim. Instead, they say your claim must be filed within a reasonable time. The problem with that is that we all have a different idea of what this means. You may think that a week or two is completely reasonable. Your personal injury attorney in Irvine may think three days is reasonable. Who is right?
The truth is that the insurance companies sometimes keep the filing deadline vague on purpose. Part of them hopes that you’ll file your claim late and they’ll have grounds to deny it. There’s another part of them that wants to hold on to their money as long as possible. They may give you a long time in which to file. If you can’t be sure, just call our office so you can meet with one of our associates. They have years of experience dealing with big insurance companies. They aren’t intimidated and they’re familiar with their procedures.
Your Car Accident Attorney in Irvine Can Help File Your Claim
If your car accident claim is denied by the insurance company, you’ll want to know why. Sometimes, the reason is simple. You may have forgot to file a certain form. Or you may not have included a copy of the police report. It’s difficult to know without seeing the letter of denial. Your car accident attorney in Irvine, California will reach out to the insurance adjuster. They’ll ask to see a copy of the denial letter. If it shows that you failed to submit certain paperwork, your attorney can rectify that. They’ll find out what’s missing and make sure it gets to the insurance company right away.
If this doesn’t work and the insurance company still denies your claim, things won’t go as smoothly. You’ll likely have to file a personal injury lawsuit against both the other drive and the insurance company. You don’t have to do this on your own. Your lawyer can file the case on your behalf. They’ll make sure everything is done properly from the start. This way, you don’t have to worry about missing the filing deadline.
Your Personal Injury Attorney in Irvine Will Make Sure You Don’t Miss the Statute of Limitations
Unlike the insurance company, the California Civil Courts are very specific when it comes to filing deadlines. According to the California Statute of Limitations, you only have two years to file your lawsuit. If you miss this deadline by a single day, your case will be dismissed. This can happen in one of two ways.
First, the defendant’s lawyer will file a motion asking that your case be dismissed. The judge will have no choice but to grant your motion. The second way this can happen is if the judge dismisses the case on their own. This can happen right away, or it may take a while for the court clerk to realize that you’re beyond the statute of limitations period.
If your case is dismissed for untimely filing, there’s nothing your lawyer can do. They can try to convince the insurance company to settle but they have no reason to do this. They know you can’t sue them, so they have no incentive to pay.
Reach Out to a Skilled Car Accident Attorney in Irvine
If you or your family member have been injured in a car accident, you have rights. You have the right to file a claim against the other driver’s insurance company. You also have the right to file a suit against them in civil court. Regardless of what you decide to do, you’ll have to make sure you don’t miss the filing deadline. If you’re worried that you’re cutting it close, make sure you call an experienced personal injury attorney in Irvine. They’ll do what they can to get your case filed on time. They’ll also let you know how the legal process works.
We recommend that you call and schedule your free, initial consultation as soon as possible after your car wreck. if you can call on the same day – great. The earlier you call, the better chance your attorney has of filing your claim on time. If you wait until it’s too late to file, there’s nothing we can do. That’s why we say you should call us sooner rather than later. The consultation is free, so you don’t have to worry about paying anything upfront. And you’ll also have the peace of mind in knowing that your claims will be filed properly and on time.