If your injury occurred less than two years ago, you can still take legal action against the at-fault party. That’s because Oklahoma’s statute of limitations for personal injury cases is two years from the date the injury occurred.
But while that generous statute of limitations should give victims plenty of time to pursue compensation, waiting until shortly before the deadline isn’t a good idea. In fact, waiting any time beyond what it takes to contact a lawyer isn’t a good idea.
If you or someone you love was injured because of someone else’s negligence, here’s what you need to know about how the passage of time can affect your chances of getting compensation.
First, Know That You Still Have a Good Chance of Winning Your Claim
Although it’s best to contact a lawyer immediately after an injury that wasn’t your fault, you aren’t out of luck if you aren’t able (or don’t think) to do so until weeks or months later. At Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers, we believe strong cases are strong cases regardless of whether they’re filed days after an injury occurs or a full calendar year later.
Unfortunately, it’s common for strong cases to become weaker cases as time passes. Waiting can also harm victims, as it means going longer without closure on their accidents—and the compensation they deserve.
Crucial Evidence Can Disappear Days After Injuries Occur
Evidence is the most important building block of personal injury cases. Unfortunately, evidence usually isn’t permanent. In fact, it’s common for important evidence, including video footage, accident debris, and eyewitness accounts, to become lost, difficult to track down, or unreliable over time.
Insurance companies become highly skeptical of victims’ claims when evidence is missing or lacking and are more likely to reduce their compensation or deny it altogether. Lack of evidence can also make winning at trial more difficult. The sooner you contact a lawyer, the more likely they will be able to secure and preserve critical case-winning evidence for you.
Insurance Companies Are More Skeptical When Significant Time Has Passed
Insurance adjusters always look for ways to pay victims as little money as possible. Because of that, they are highly skeptical of injury claims by default.
When victims claim their injuries occurred months ago, the adjusters’ first instinct is usually to believe that their injuries were caused by something other than what they claim and the victims are trying to get paid for unrelated incidents. For example, they may believe an injury victim who is claiming they suffered a shoulder injury in their car crash actually injured their shoulder playing recreational baseball a month later.
Thankfully, evidence and skilled personal injury attorneys can help push back on these biased and unfair notions. But to avoid potential headaches, it’s best to take legal action as soon as possible. The less time between an accident or injury and an injury claim, the less wiggle room the adjuster has to believe the injury was caused elsewhere.
The Longer You Wait to Sue, the Longer You Go Without Compensation
At Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers, we strive to build and finalize our clients’ claims quickly. We know they need money right away for their mounting medical bills and lost wages, and it’s our goal to get them paid in full so they can move forward with their lives. However, even the most straightforward and “slam-dunk” personal injury cases take time.
If you wait several months to contact a lawyer and start the compensation process, you may wait a few more months for your claim to be finalized, whether through an out-of-court settlement or a jury verdict. For many people, this delay can result in serious financial trouble.
Contact Our Oklahoma Personal Injury Lawyers Anytime for a Free Case Review
Our firm’s Oklahoma personal injury attorneys have won cases where victims contacted us immediately and cases where victims contacted us several weeks or months later. Although it’s ideal to contact us as soon as you can, we understand that’s not always possible. In fact, it’s common for victims not to consider suing until their medical bills start piling up and their lost wages become a significant financial burden.
No matter where your injury falls within Oklahoma’s two-year statute of limitations, you can count on our lawyers to work hard to collect critical evidence, build a compelling case, and demand you get paid fair compensation for your damages. Contact Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers today for a free consultation.