At Cook, Barkett, Ponder and Wolz, we believe it’s important to educate our clients, helping them to understand their available legal options and working with them to find the best strategies and outcomes for their situation. That's why we provide education resources about the legal process and the answers to frequently asked questions.
If you have been injured or traumatized and believe someone else (another person, company, another person’s property or pet) is at fault, you could have a personal injury case.
Speaking with an experienced personal injury attorney is the best way to protect your interests and determine if you have a claim.
With any kind of lawsuit, state law sets a deadline for going to court and getting the case filed. For claims involving a car accident, slip and fall, dog bite, or similar type of case, the statute of limitations varies by state. In Missouri, it’s 5 years.
If you were injured on the job and intend to make a workers' compensation claim, there are certain time limitations. The first concerns the duty to provide your employer with "notice of injury." An injured employee or his/her representative (or "claimant") must give the employer notice of the injury "immediately on the occurrence of any accident or as soon thereafter as practicable," but in no event later than "thirty days after the occurrence of an accident or within thirty days after death resulting from an accident."
Missouri, along with 12 other states, recognizes what’s known as the Pure Comparative Fault Rule, which allows a damaged party to recover even if he/she is 99 percent at fault, although the recovery is reduced by the damaged party’s degree of fault.
Never give an oral statement to the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If you are contacted, politely decline to talk. Your attorney will help determine the best way to proceed.
After an accident, always protect the scene and avoid additional collisions by moving your vehicle to the side of the road if possible. At night, use flares or reflectors if possible to alert oncoming drivers to the accident.
There are exceptions, but if you’ve sustained an injury due to negligence on another’s part, you may be compensated for past and future medical bills; aggravation of a pre-existing condition; lost wages and/or lost earning capacity; property damage; pain, suffering and other “non-economic” damages.
Unless you have paid for this add-on, most policies do not cover the cost of towing, and you will be responsible for that cost. If you have insurance that covers this cost, you will most likely be billed directly by the towing company, and then reimbursed by your insurance company.
It is your legal right to choose your own repair facility. Insurance companies are required to pay all reasonable and necessary costs associated with repairs, no matter who performs the work.
If you have life-threatening injuries or are experiencing severe distress, call 911 for an ambulance. If your injuries are more minor, a walk-in clinic, chiropractor or family physician may be an option.
Do not delay medical treatment after an accident. You are entitled to be seen by a physician whether you are not in pain. Medical professionals are trained to spot accident-related health problems that the average person may not recognize.
For insurance claim purposes, you must be seen within 72 hours of the accident.
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