• By: Graham Sutliff
  • Published: December 2020

personal injury claims during COVIDIt’s understandable to be worried about COVID-19 and the many ways it has disrupted our everyday lives since March. Despite stay-at-home orders, a personal injury may still happen at your house, the grocery store, or in your vehicle.

Our world is changing at an alarming rate, causing extreme levels of anxiety and stress. Even in the middle of a pandemic, you must still resolve your personal injury claim. Reaching out for assistance should never be an issue, and the attorneys at Sutliff & Stout will virtually stand by your side during this difficult time.

Has the Statute of Limitations Been Extended in Texas?

For most personal injury claims in Texas, the statute of limitations is two years. While this is typically a strict rule, the governor has declared a state of emergency, allowing courts to extend the statute of limitations for all civil cases no later than 30 days after the state of emergency ends.

However, a coalition of attorneys sent a letter to the Texas Supreme Court asking to issue a limitations rule for the entire state allowing all deadlines to be tolled for 75 days after the state of emergency is lifted. The Court responded, saying that deadlines between March 13 and June 1, 2020, could be tolled unless extended.

Tolling pauses how long you have to file a claim. For example, if you were injured in March with a statute of limitation of one year, but a toll was put on claims until June, you would have an additional three months to file a claim.

Just because the court tolled claims does not mean you can’t file one. Tolling could be a good thing for filing claims, as it allows you more time to decide if you want to pursue legal action. But it may make your claim take longer to resolve. This legal term may be confusing, so it’s essential to consult with a personal injury attorney to determine your claim’s correct date.

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Can I Still File a Personal Injury Claim During COVID-19?

Judges nationwide have moved courtrooms to virtual spaces, and many courthouses have temporarily suspended in-person trials. Despite these changes, you are still able to file a personal injury claim. Fortunately, most personal injury claims are settled before making their way to trial. With courthouses closed, the process has slowed down, but cases will still move forward.

Will My Medical Treatment Be Delayed?

Doctors or patients have rescheduled elective surgeries, and many doctors are urging patients to reschedule surgeries to hospitals not overloaded with COVID-19 cases. Depending on the nature of the surgery, you may face some delays. If this happens, it’s vital to stay in constant communication with your healthcare provider. You should also be documenting any pain and symptoms while waiting for your rescheduled appointment. As with any accident, it’s crucial to complete all necessary treatment before your case closes.

Receiving medical treatment is crucial to your claim’s value. If you haven’t been billed for medical treatment, your attorney can’t correctly add that expense to your claim. They’ll only be able to present the insurance company with an estimate of your medical costs. Insurance companies rarely take estimations into account.

Should You Go to the Doctor Following an Accident?

We advise seeing a medical professional after an accident as soon as it is safe to do so. Receiving medical care is crucial for your health and your claim. The longer you wait to receive medical treatment, the more delays you will have with your insurance. Insurance companies may even use delayed treatment as an argument in paying less. If you don’t feel comfortable going to a hospital or doctor’s office, consider a virtual doctor’s appointment.

What Does My Car Insurance Cover If I’m in an Accident During Stay-at-Home Orders?

Keeping your car insurance policy up to date is always important, no matter how much you think you’ll be on the road. If you were in an accident during stay-at-home orders, most car insurance policies still cover motorists. However, don’t risk going out unless you have to.

Speak to a Licensed Personal Injury Attorney in Houston

If you suffered a personal injury during COVID-19, you might have many questions regarding your case. The Board-Certified attorneys at Sutliff & Stout are here to help. Despite being in a pandemic, you mustn’t delay obtaining trusted legal representation for your personal injury. The sooner you contact us, the more helpful we can be.

We believe that every individual is entitled to the highest quality of legal representation, which is why our team will work tirelessly to secure compensation for injuries, property damage, pain and suffering, and other losses you have suffered. Call us today at (713) 987-7111 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.

About the Author

Graham Sutliff is a founding partner at Sutliff & Stout, Injury & Accident Law Firm. Among other awards and certifications, he is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law and has been recognized by Thomson Reuters as a Super Lawyer for the past decade. In 2019 alone, Graham recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients who were injured by others. To learn more about Graham, click here.

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