Can you sue an out-of-state driver for injury expenses?
Out-of-state license plates are a daily sighting on the nation’s roads, fresh evidence of the unique tapestry of highways and byways that comprise the U.S. automotive transportation system. But unfamiliarity with area roads often leads to traffic accidents. In 2015 – the most recent year in which data is available – police-reported crashes totaled 6.2 million, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Of these, 1.7 million caused injury, usually to drivers but also passengers.
If you’ve ever been in an accident, it was probably with someone who also lives in the state, given that most traffic is composed of area residents. But have you ever wondered what would happen if you were injured in a car accident by an out-of-state motorist?
Insurance laws can be confusing
Given that auto insurance laws vary from one state to the next, it’s easy to understand why many Americans aren’t so sure about what would happen in this kind of scenario. After all, even though the vast majority of states require motorists to have liability auto insurance, the amounts that are mandated vary widely.
But the ability to sue an at-fault motorist is not contingent on whether they, too, live in the same state as you do. Even though where an accident occurs determines what state has ultimate jurisdiction, there’s nothing preventing the people injured from filing a lawsuit if the person to blame lives elsewhere. This is an important piece of information to be mindful of, given how many people travel in and out of states every day. In 2016, Americans drove a whopping 3.2 trillion miles,according to the Federal Highway Administration, the fifth consecutive year that travel has risen.
Attorney can bring simplicity to legal process
Other traffic and insurance laws are much less clear cut, especially if an accident results in injury. For example, the statute of limitations on personal injury in Maine is six years, but in Louisiana is only one year. Furthermore, the cost of lawsuit can run the gamut, due to a variety of influential factors that may be unique to the state.
This fact alone makes consulting with a lawyer after a car accident worth your while. At Global Financial, we can provide the financing you need to retain an attorney and move forward with the case before the statute of limitations runs out. For more information on how cash advances work and how you may qualify, click here.