Frequently Asked Questions For Ohio Personal Injury Claims
If you are looking for answers to basic questions about your Ohio injury claim, this part of the Miraldi & Barrett web site is devoted to providing thorough answers to those questions. Whether you were injured in a car crash, by a defective product, or a vicious dog, these questions are answered here. If the injuries involve the spine, a serious fracture, paralysis or relate to the death of a family member, this section will answer your questions. If you do not find the answers to your questions here, please call us at 1-800-589-3023.
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I signed a release with the insurance company several weeks ago and now just discovered that I will need surgery for a herniated disc in my neck. Can I re-open the claim?
A release validly extinguishes a person's claim for additional money damages if both sides intended the release to be final and to encompass injuries known and unknown at the time of the signing.
In limited situations, a release may be avoided if the injured person can establish that the release was executed by mutual mistake. A mutual mistake may occur when both sides believe that there is no injury and then an injury later develops. However, if the release covered all injuries, those known and unknown, mutual mistake will not be established.
A release can also be cancelled if the release was obtained by fraud in the inducement. For example, if the insurance company misrepresented that the release was final or stated that it would continue to pay medical bills, this may constitute fraud and void the release.
If you have any doubt as to the effect of a legal document that an insurance company is asking you to sign, you should go to an attorney and have the document reviewed.
What kind of losses can be recovered if someone's carelessness injures me?
In injury cases, a person is entitled to both economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages are the reasonable value of medical services, lost wages, and other out-of-pocket expenses. Non-economic damages include harms and losses that reflect pain, discomfort, inability to enjoy activities, and emotional upset. If injuries are permanent, compensation may be awarded for future harms and losses in these same categories.
How does the court determine what I receive?
If your case is not settled before going to an actual trial, your compensation is normally determined by a jury after receiving instructions from the judge regarding the type of harms and losses that are recoverable based upon the evidence presented at trial. Usually the court will instruct the jury to consider the amount of medical expenses, any lost wages or future earnings that resulted from the injury, the pain and suffering associated with your injuries, any loss of ability to do normal activities, and emotional upset. The jury will consider an award for these types of losses, but is not required to award compensation unless it finds that you have probably sustained those losses.
How long does it take to settle a claim?
Although you may be tempted to opt for a quick settlement, you should never settle until the full extent of your injuries is known. Usually settlement discussions can be started after you have completed your treatment and your doctor is able to give a prognosis regarding future problems. This time frame depends largely on how long you treat and how long it takes for the doctor to provide a report detailing your injuries.
What is the time period for filing a claim?
Generally speaking, adults have to file within two years of the injury date, although minors may have until their 20th birthday to file. However, different time periods apply for medical malpractice and dog bites. It is important to contact an attorney to determine the time limitation that applies to your specific situation.
What is considered when determining the amount of financial compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit?
A wrongful death claim is brought on behalf of the survivors of the person killed by the negligence of another. These persons are called beneficiaries. The beneficiaries may be entitled to compensation for funeral expenses, the loss of earnings that the decedent would have provided to them over his lifetime, lost benefits, the value of the services that the decedent would have provided at home, mental anguish, and loss of companionship.
How much time do I have to file a wrongful death suit?
In Ohio, the general rule is two years from the date of death of the individual. There may be some exceptions to this, so please consult an attorney so that the exact facts and circumstances of the claim may be analyzed.