If you have recently been injured in a Missouri auto crash, you may be wondering what steps to take in the aftermath. Of course, receiving the proper medical treatment is your first priority. Even if you did not need immediate hospitalization, the complications of whiplash, severe contusions, sprains, muscle tears, minor or moderate lacerations, and other non life-threatening injuries can cause serious issues down the road. Not only does medical treatment help your health and well being in the long run, it helps the legitimacy of your personal injury claim. Without all four of the below listed criteria, there is a good chance that your lawsuit will be dismissed. If you need legal help following your car crash, contact an experienced car accident attorney today for a free consultation. In the state of Missouri, you have five years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury claim under the Missouri Revised Statutes Section 516.120.1, so you have time to file a claim for compensation even if you were injured years ago.
Duty of Care
In all aspect of life, we and the companies and businesses that we interact with all owe each other a duty of care. This is true at your place of work as well as the restaurant down the street. The safety of all employees and attendees who enter must be preserved, meaning that the premises must be safe, and, in the case of a place of work, the employee’s obligations must be within reasonable safety of their job description. In terms of a traffic safety, all users of the roads must operate their vehicles in a reasonably safe manner.
Breach of Duty of Care
For a lawsuit to have grounds for success, you must be able to prove that your injuries and property damage were the cause of another’s breach in duty of care. In this scenario, it must be proven that the party that caused the crash was driving in a negligent way. This can include speeding, failing to yield, improper lane changes, failing to use turn signals, driving while distracted (cell phone use is not illegal in Missouri for drivers over 21 years of age, though it can still be considered a cause of negligence), or other traffic infractions.
Proof of Damage
In order for a lawsuit to be successful, you must be able to prove that you or your loved one sustained physical injuries, emotional turmoil (pain and suffering), financial damage (such as lost wages or a permanent disability that will keep you from working), or property damage. This is why receiving medical care is important following a car accident. Proving that you did in fact receive physical injury is key.
Link Between Breach of Duty and Damages
Finally, you must be able to prove that the party that was negligent in their actions to uphold their duty of care was responsible for the injuries and other damages that you sustained. Piecing all of these pieces of information together can be complicated, time consuming, and stressful. Hiring a competent attorney to have at your side is invaluable in ensuring you receive the compensation that you are entitled to. Contact a Kansas City, Missouri, car accident attorney the Krause and Kinsman Law Firm today.
Adam Krause is a personal injury, mass tort, business litigation, and employment discrimination attorney who practices in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law and has been practicing law for several years now. Adam Krause has made a career of taking complicated litigation and presenting it in the most elementary terms for a jury of your peers to understand. Learn more about his experience here.