Cedar Rapids car accident: Iowa laws explained

Immediately after an on-road mishap in Cedar Rapids, you may feel overwhelmed, shocked, and jittery. If the accident resulted in injuries, you should call 911 before anything else. It is also essential to inform the local police without delay. Once the dust settles, you should consider consulting a Cedar Rapids car accident lawyer to know your claim better. Iowa is a fault state. If the accident happened because of the other driver’s disregard for safety or intent, you could sue them for your losses, pain, and suffering. For your help, we have explained the Iowa laws below. 

 Deadline for filing car accident injury lawsuits

States usually have a statute of limitations that sets the deadline for injury lawsuits. Basically, it tells the victim to file a lawsuit within that time if they intend to sue the other side. In Iowa, you should file your car accident injury lawsuit within two years. The deadline starts from the accident date, and it doesn’t matter how much time you have lost running after the insurance company. If you have suffered vehicle damage only, you have five years to file a lawsuit. The window to file wrongful death claims is two years. 

Shared fault in car accidents

It is not unusual to come across car accidents where more than one party is to blame. In such cases, Iowa follows the modified comparative fault system. One party can only sue the other party at fault if their fault share is less. Also, the fault percentage is used to determine the final settlement for a claimant. Let’s assume that you were given $200,000 for your injuries and losses for an accident claim but were also found to be 40% at fault. Your eventual settlement would be $120,000. 

Consulting an accident lawyer

It is not mandatory to hire an attorney for your accident claim, but it is a wise step to consider. Lawyers know what it takes to negotiate a settlement with insurance companies and can take legal action against the at-fault party, if needed, on your behalf. Your lawyer is also responsible for handling all paperwork related to the case and will investigate the accident to find evidence and witnesses. Most accident lawyers in Cedar Rapids work on a contingency basis. The lawyer can only get a fee when you win, and it is a fixed percentage of the financial award. 

Check with an accident lawyer now to know more about your case.