After a car accident, time seems to fly by as everything needs to be done as fast as possible. But, are there real deadlines for when everything needs to be done? Is there enough time to start recovering from the accident before handling the insurance claim? While there are deadlines, they all differ, so everything doesn’t need to be done immediately.

Amount of Time to Seek Medical Care

Medical care should be obtained immediately after an accident. However, it’s possible the victim in the accident will feel fine, just a little shaken up, right after the accident. Even if the victim does not feel like they’re injured, it’s typically a good idea to have a check-up done. It’s never a good idea to try to relax and recover from even relatively minor injuries without seeking help from a doctor. If there is no medical checkup, the liable party’s insurance company might deny the claim on the basis that there were no injuries. Check out now to learn more about why prompt medical attention is a good idea.

Amount of Time to Start Property Repair

There’s no specific deadline to start property repairs in most places. However, like with medical care, if there is no proof that there were any damages, there is no claim. If the victim’s vehicle is damaged, they should have it inspected by a mechanic quickly. A delay in having the inspection done could mean the at-fault party’s insurance company can claim the damage was done after the accident, not because of the accident, which may mean they’ll deny the claim. Once the inspection is done, the actual repairs don’t need to be done immediately.

Amount of Time to File a Claim with Insurance

Most insurance policies, absent specific laws in that state, will state that victims need to file a claim within a reasonable amount of time. This varies, but it’s typically a good idea to go ahead and file the claim as soon as possible after the accident. While the victim may want to work with a lawyer on their car accident case, having the case filed with the insurance company quickly allows them to make sure they don’t miss this deadline or have issues with filing the claim later on.

Amount of Time to Start a Lawsuit

A personal injury suit doesn’t need to be completed within a certain time frame; it just needs to be started. The statute of limitations for starting a lawsuit after a car crash does differ by state, but most states allow for between one to six years before the suit must be filed with the court. If the case is not filed by this point, the victim can't sue for damages at a later time, which means they could be responsible for any costs associated with the accident instead of being able to receive compensation.

While there are deadlines for most aspects of a car accident case, many of them are not immediate. Seek medical attention right after the accident and then have the vehicle inspected to determine the scope of the damages. After that, contact a lawyer and let them handle filing the claim, negotiating a settlement, or taking the case to court. While they handle all of the claims and deadlines, you can focus on recovering from the accident.