Personal injury is a very broad area of law which not only covers accidents such as auto accidents and slip and fall, but also includes financial injury, such as property damage and defamation, and can include emotional injury.
Like every state, Indiana has unique personal injury laws, even though the general concepts are the same throughout the country. The smallest details can have a very large impact on your case.
Negligence is the key element of fault in most personal injury cases. The person who caused your injuries did not have to do so intentionally in order to be held responsible. They merely had to fail to use the minimum amount of care that the average person would have used, thereby causing your injuries. Negligence can consist of an action or inaction. A business owner failing to clean up a spill in a timely fashion, leading to a slip and fall which caused injury, would be an example of a negligent inaction.
Product liability cases require that you prove strict liability on the part of the product maker, instead of negligence. In Indiana, strict liability involves the following elements:
- The seller should have known that you fall into a class of people who would likely be harmed by the product (not trained or old enough to use it properly, etc.)
- The product reached you in its original condition
- The product caused your injury and, therefore, you suffered damages
In Indiana, as long as you are less than 50% responsible for your injuries, you can receive compensation even if you are partly to blame, under the doctrine of “modified comparative negligence.”
Collecting from multiple responsible parties
It is not unusual for there to be more than one party responsible for your injuries (aside from yourself if you were partly responsible). Indiana uses the rule of several liability. Each party pays only their share, proportionate to their part of the blame. You must collect from each party individually.
The time limit for filing a lawsuit is called the statute of limitations. This time limit is different in each state. In Indiana, you have two years to file in most personal injury cases. However, certain circumstances can affect how the time is calculated, putting a hold on the time limit.
For more in depth information about time limits in Indiana read our Indiana Statute of Limitations page.
If you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses including:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship
- Emotional distress
- Other costs caused by your injury
Personal injury laws vary from state to state. If you believe you have a personal injury claim and you live in Indiana, please contact one of our Indiana personal injury lawyers for a free claim evaluation.