Let's say you're on your way to Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium to show your kids the largest indoor rainforest in the country. As your GPS tells you to exit I-80, you carefully make a signal to turn to the right lane. Then, bam! The car right behind you failed to slow down and rear-ended your car. You are panicking as you check up on your children to see if they're okay. What to do now? Do you call the police? Will your insurance cover all the damages done to your car? Read on to learn about the Nebraska car accident settlement process and timeline.
Do I Need to Report a Car Accident in Nebraska?
Yes, in some situations. You are required to complete the Driver's Motor Vehicle Accident Report within 10 days of the accident if the accident caused: (1) physical injuries or death of any person, or (2) more than $1,000 in damages.
Nebraska Car Insurance Laws
Nebraska requires you to carry liability insurance for every vehicle you own and operate. Your car insurance policy must meet the following minimum amount of coverage:
- $25,000 for bodily injury per person
- $50,000 for total bodily injury if multiple people are injured
- $25,000 for property damages
How Do Car Accident Settlements Work in Nebraska?
Nebraska is a fault state when it comes to car accidents and insurance claims. The state follows the traditional tort system, so it allows you to choose any of the following options to recover damages: (1) file a claim with your own insurance company, (2) file a third-party claim with the other driver's insurance company, or (3) file a lawsuit. These options are available if you were injured and the other driver is proven to be at fault. The driver who is at fault and his or her insurance company must pay damages for personal injury and property damage.
When you file a claim with an insurance company, it will ask you to submit paperwork and evidence related to the accident. The insurance company will investigate your case and determine whether to offer you a settlement check or not. If your claim is denied or if you disagree with the offer, you should make an appeal to a claims adjuster. Appeals process can differ from company to company.
If you are filing a lawsuit, you will first make an initial filing by drafting a complaint and submitting it to a county court or a district court. Although the majority of car accident cases are settled before they reach court hearing, sometimes a lawsuit might be the only way to collect damages from the other driver. It is highly recommended to contact an attorney and discuss what legal options you may have.
What Is the Average Car Accident Settlement in Nebraska?
In Nebraska, it does not impose damages caps on personal injury and property damage arising out of a car accident, which means there is no limit in the amount of damages you can recover. In Nebraska, the most common types of car accident damages are medical expenses, car repair and replacement costs, lost wages due to missed work, physical pain and emotional distress.
When it comes to shared fault among the parties, Nebraska applies the modified comparative negligence standard. This rule allows you to recover damages as long as you are less at fault than the other driver. The amount of damages will be diminished in proportion to the amount of your fault. If you're found more than 50 percent at fault, you won't be able to recovery any damages.
How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Lawsuit in Nebraska?
In Nebraska, you have four years to file a lawsuit for both personal injury and property damage. The clock starts ticking from the moment of the accident. If you don't file your claim within that timeframe, court will deny to hear your case and you won't be able to recover any damages.
Contact a Nebraska Attorney About Your Car Accident Settlement
While understanding the basics of the Nebraska car accident settlement process and timeline may be straightforward, every car accident case is different and questions about a specific accident can only be answered by an experienced attorney. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer in Nebraska in a timely manner and get some peace of mind.