Easing The Litigation Experience

A Close Friend Has Caused Your Injuries: Now What?

The only thing worse than getting hurt unexpectedly is having a close friend who is responsible for it. Accidents can happen, but when a close friend refuses to take responsibility or to help with bills caused by that accident, the relationship can become estranged. You might feel awkward about the situation and become angrier and angrier. Before you do something which will exacerbate an already bad situation, think about these possible post-injury steps.

Explore Lawsuit Time Limits

Even if a lawsuit isn't something you want to do right now, the landscape may change after bills become difficult to cover and you begin missing out on work days. At least know how long you will be able to seek legal redress for what's happened. Don't assume that the situation will resolve itself without legal action; local courts can inform you about all limits just in case.

Consult an Attorney

Consulting a personal injury attorney about your injuries doesn't necessarily mean you're going to sue your friend. Instead, a good attorney will lay out all your options, even those you've not personally considered already. Often, consultations are free so that you don't have to worry about coming up with funds to discuss your situation. This gives you free time to really think through what's occurred with your friend with a professional who can point you in a direction that you're comfortable with. If you do later want to file a suit because of your personal injuries, the lawyer will of course guide you.

Avoid Personal Contact

After knowing and being around your close friend so long, you might start thinking that a single conversation will clear up the entire situation. You may feel truly eager to work things out amicably; you may plan to offer to split costs or make other offers of goodwill.

However, you can't be absolutely sure of how they're feeling. Your plan could end up backfiring, making you and them angrier. This could ruin any chances that they'll take responsibility and could ruin the friendship for good. To allow cooler heads to manage affairs, leave communication to your attorney and theirs.

Don't Involve Mutual Friends

Mutual friends are likely to feel pulled in both directions. For their comfort, you may wish to avoid even discussing your friend and what happened to you. In fact, being reticent may be vital; you can't be sure what information will be passed on to the friend about how you're recovering and other details which could hurt the case you're trying to build. 

A lawsuit may eventually prove to be the most sensible course. Do your best to heed these suggestions and work closely with everyone in your legal team until the case has been decided.