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Can You Sue for a Car Accident if You’re Not Hurt in Missouri?

When people think about car accident lawsuits, they usually associate them with injuries. While this is often the case, it doesn’t have to be. Accident victims can potentially still bring a lawsuit to recover other losses after an accident. 

Here’s a look at how compensation works after a car accident and how to bring a lawsuit if you’re not injured in an accident. 

Compensation After a Car Accident

Missouri is an “at-fault” state. This means that the party that caused an accident is responsible for all damages caused by the accident. The at-fault party is responsible for all economic and non-economic damages, including: 

  • Medical bills and medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity 
  • Future medical expenses
  • Property Damage 
  • Mental anguish
  • Pain and suffering 
  • Loss of consortium
  • Decreased quality of life

These are just examples of the damages you may be able to recover. The exact damages available will depend on the facts and circumstances of your case.

How To Successfully Bring a Lawsuit After a Missouri Car Accident 

Most personal injury cases are brought under a theory of negligence. To prove negligence, the accident victim must show: 

  1. The at-fault party, or defendant, owed the victim, or plaintiff, a duty of care. This element is usually pretty straightforward in car accident cases. All drivers owe a duty of care to other drivers. This includes a duty to follow all traffic laws and drive safely.  
  2. The defendant breached that duty of care. Plaintiffs can prove this element by showing that the responsible party did not use reasonable care or act as a reasonable person would in the same circumstance. 
  3. The breach was the direct and proximate cause of the accident. 
  4. The plaintiff suffered damages because of the accident.

To recover in a personal injury case, plaintiffs must prove all four elements of negligence. A car accident lawyer can analyze your case and determine whether you’re entitled to compensation after a car accident. 

Steps for Getting Compensation After a Car Accident 

When you’re injured in an accident caused by another person, the first step is filing a claim with their insurance company. Because Missouri is an at-fault state, the responsible party’s insurance company must reimburse you for all injuries after an accident. 

A personal injury lawyer can help with this process because car accident lawyers have experience working with and negotiating with insurance companies. Your lawyer will gather evidence to support your claim and your calculation of damages. This will include things like receipts, invoices, and estimates. 

Your lawyer will then work with the insurance adjuster to get full compensation for your losses. If the insurance company is unwilling to make a reasonable payment, you might be forced to file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible party. 

The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Missouri is five years. This means that you have five years from the date of your car accident to file a lawsuit. 

In most cases involving property damage, a lawyer can get full compensation without having to file a lawsuit. That said, an experienced personal injury lawyer is always prepared to file a lawsuit and represent you in court. 

Contact a Missouri Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you were involved in a car accident, one of the first steps you should take is to reach out to an attorney for a free consultation. Since most lawyers in this area of the law work on contingency, you only pay them attorney’s fees if they successfully handle your claim.

Need help preparing for your car accident, work injury, or wrongful death case? Call Roach Law Car Accident Lawyers, at (636) 238-5848 for a free consultation with a Missouri personal injury lawyer.