As summer progresses, many people are inclined to pursue outdoor activities. In Minnesota, one of the activities one can be involved in is the riding of ATVs. However, enjoying recreational activities outdoors always has some risks attached, especially when machinery is involved. Experiencing an accident when driving an ATV outdoors is a present risk associated with the activity.
While accidents could be associated with the negligence of the driver, it is also possible that another party is at fault. This article discusses how to file and win a lawsuit in the event of an ATV accident where other parties are at fault.
Before filing a case, you must determine whether the courts have jurisdiction to handle the issue. An ATV accident lawyer Minnesota has to determine whether the aspects of jurisdiction associated with the case have been met. There are various issues to be on the lookout for concerning jurisdiction. Firstly, it is essential to identify whether the accident occurred in Minnesota.
Secondly, there has to be a sufficient link between the defendant in the case and Minnesota for the court to hear the matter. For example, is the party being sued a resident of Minnesota? Is the business being sued located or registered in Minnesota? Answering these questions will be instrumental in determining whether the courts in Minnesota have jurisdiction to hear the case.
Investigation And Collection Of Evidence
In any legal dispute, winning the case depends on which party has the most evidence supporting their claim. Collecting evidence in an ATV accident case begins the moment the accident occurs. After the accident, the first step should be taking the injured party to the hospital. The hospital can then assess the injuries that the person suffered, determine whether the injuries are caused by reckless driving or simply a fault on the part of another party, and provide an accounting of the costs of medical care that the injured party would have to pay for them to recover.
This will let you know how much damage you will claim in the suit. It will also be necessary to interview witnesses and take photos of the accident scene, as these images will be very instrumental during the case. Lastly, ensure that you obtain a police report detailing the whole accident.
Actual Legal Proceedings
Summons And Complaints
Before any civil case can begin in Minnesota, the plaintiff must file a summons and complaint, which must be delivered to the defendant. In the summons and complaints, you are expected to illustrate the order of events surrounding the accident. This includes an enumerated account of what the defendant did to put them at fault.
In the summons and complaint, you also need to establish how the defendant’s actions caused you to harm and what kind of harm you suffered. It is essential to note the specific demands of the court in which you are filing the summons and complaints since judges will likely dismiss a case if the procedural requirements have not been met. The defendants ordinarily have 20 days to respond to the subpoena and complaints, failure to which the court may enter judgment in favor of the plaintiff. However, the defendant may seek additional time, although the plaintiff is in no obligation to grant the extension.
At this point of the dispute, it is most advisable to negotiate a settlement with the other party. Not all ATV accident cases must go to litigation. At the negotiation step, you can approach the case’s defendant with a fair offer so you do not go to trial. This offer must be able to cover all the medical records and provide for future provisions in case the loss of wages also plays a part in the case. If the defendants are unwilling to settle the matter, then litigation remains the last option.
The litigation step is almost always very time-consuming. To win in litigation, you have to appeal to the jury, who then determines whether or not the other party is liable. Appealing to the jury requires both the use of compelling evidence and the use of persuasive language. Therefore, you must be ready to plead your case before the jury and explain to them how much you lost due to the accident and whether the other party is liable for the damages you experienced. Doing so will allow you to win the case and receive damages for the ATV accident.
Suffering injuries due to an ATV accident is often very challenging for any victim. This situation is exacerbated in instances where another party is to blame for the accident. Therefore, everyone must be prepared with the requisite knowledge that allows them to file and win an ATV accident case. However, it is advisable to approach a lawyer who would be very willing and able to handle the technical aspects of the law on your behalf if you are not one.