Kansas is stunning. Kansas is magnificent, from the peaceful prairies and cornfields of the west to the Kansas Turnpike, which leads to the best professional sports teams and barbeque in the country. It’s not all sunshine and sunflowers, though: locals will tell you about the freezing temperatures and black ice of winter, the rare tornadoes, and the sudden rain and lightning storms – all of which can cause car accidents. And if the accident involves another driver, you’d be wise to educate yourself on car accident compensation laws.
Rules For Car Accident in Kansas
Kansas has “No Fault” and “Contributory Negligence” Rules
Kansas is one of the few states that has “no fault” car insurance and accident compensation laws. In Kansas, drivers must first file a claim with their own insurance, using the state-mandated “personal injury protection (PIP)” coverage. Drivers are only allowed to seek compensation from the other driver if they have exhausted their own coverage and have suffered a serious injury, defined by Kansas as:
- permanent affliction
- permanent harm
- permanent impairment of a bodily function
- a weight-bearing bone fracture
- Any bone fracture can be compound, confluent, compressed, or dislocated.
Who Pay for kansas Car Accident
If your case meets the criteria for serious injuries, you should also be aware of Kansas’ “modified comparison fault” rules. At trial, a judge or jury assigns percentages of fault to each driver and adjusts their liability accordingly. For example, if a driver sustains $10,000 in damages but is found to be 10% at fault, his recovery will be limited to 90% of his damages ($9,000 in this case). A driver who is 50% or more at fault cannot be compensated.
Car accident damages are typically classified as either economic or non-economic. Economic damages include lost wages due to missed work, vehicle repair or replacement, past and future medical expenses, and other out-of-pocket expenditures. Misery and anguish, emotional distress, and disability or deformity are all examples of non-economic damages. Car accidents cause the following types of damages:
- Suffering and pain
- Medical Bills
- Automobile rentals
- Wages lost
- Loss of love or companionship
In addition to the “no fault” insurance rules, which may prevent you from filing a claim in court, and the comparative fault rules, which reduce your damage award, there are other limits in Kansas that must be addressed.The very first, and often most stringent, limitation is the time limit for filing a legal case (Statute of Limitations). Personal (bodily) injury, wrongful death, and property claims in Kansas have a two-year statute of limitations. If you miss this deadline, your case is likely lost – so it’s critical to consult with an Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys early in the process to ensure you don’t miss the deadline. The Kansas cap on quasi damages, which was narrowly upheld by the Kansas Supreme Court in 2012, is the other major limit.
When Should I Report a Car Accident?
When you are ordered to report a car accident to the police, it can be difficult to understand. Kansas, like every other state, has its own set of laws governing car accident procedures. According to the chart below, Kansas only requires motorists to report accidents to police under certain conditions. Failure to report a car accident when required by law in Kansas is punishable by a driver’s licence suspension until the report is filed. If you have not filed your report after a 30-day suspension, you may be charged with a misdemeanour punishable by up to one month in jail.
Contact a Kansas Injury Lawyer to Get Compensation for Your Injuries
As you can see, filing a car accident lawsuit in Kansas presents some significant challenges. If you do not carefully navigate the strict time limits, damage limits, and rules on no fault insurance and comparative fault, it can be disastrous to your claim.
Car accidents, whether slight fender-benders or major injuries or vehicle damage, are an unfortunate part of life. It can be hard to know what steps to take first in the aftermath of an accident. If you are involved in a car accident in Kansas, it is critical that you understand the laws regarding when you must notify the police. Learn more about having to file a car accident report in Kansas by reading our words.