Best Personal Injury Lawyers Washington, D.C. Of 2024 – Forbes

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To help you better understand your case, we’ve compiled a list of personal injury laws in Washington, D.C. Speak with a skilled personal injury lawyer in the D.C. Metro area to learn more about the laws you see below.

Washington, D.C. Statute of Limitations

There is a limit on how long you have to file a personal injury lawsuit in Washington, D.C. This statute of limitations varies depending on where and how you were injured:

  • You have three years to file personal injury claims and lawsuits for common incidents like dog bites, medical malpractice, auto accidents and defective products.
  • All wrongful death claims must be filed within two years of the incident.
  • You only have six months to file an injury claim or lawsuit against a U.S. government entity or employee.

Washington, D.C. Personal Injury Laws

Washington, D.C. personal injury laws do not cap settlement amounts. For instance, car accident victims have the right to sue up to the limits of their insurance policy.

Medical malpractice and pain and suffering settlements are not capped either, meaning you may be entitled to complete coverage of your medical and rehabilitation costs.

However, personal injury laws in Washington, D.C. could limit your case in the following ways:

  • Medical malpractice. Most states require a certificate of merit for medical practice lawsuits, but cases in D.C. do not need to be reviewed by a medical expert. Instead, the law requires victims and their attorneys to go through a non-binding arbitration to see if a settlement can be reached before filing a lawsuit.
  • Dog bites. If a dog is ‘at large’ (off leash and not at home), the owner is liable for any bite unless the victim was trespassing on the owner’s property or provoked the attack..

Assumption of Risk and Contributory Fault

Washington, D.C. follows a very strict fault law for personal injury claims known as the contributory fault rule. Contributory fault means your assumption of risk could cancel out your chance for compensation if you are at all at fault for the injury or accident.

For example, say you’re injured while at work on a construction site but failed to wear the proper safety gear. If the court finds you partially responsible for your injuries, your chances for an award or settlement are null.

Insurance companies may also try to claim contributory fault and reduce your payout. This is where a skilled personal injury lawyer can help out.

How Can an Attorney Help You?

An experienced personal injury attorney in Washington, D.C. can navigate the contributory fault laws and file all the necessary motions on your behalf so you can focus on recovery.

Personal injury laws in D.C. can change every year. An attorney will be well aware of any updates and how they pertain to your case and will use this knowledge to help protect your rights and represent you in settlement negotiations or at trial.

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