Personal Injury Law in Alaska

Were you hurt due to another’s negligence in Alaska? If so, it may have far-reaching consequences such as a loss of wages or extensive medical treatment. Personal injury law allows an injured person to get damages if the responsible person acted recklessly. A personal injury attorney in Alaska can help navigate the lawsuit to make sure you receive all of the compensation you deserve.

What Is Personal Injury Law?

Personal injury law in Alaska relates to the legal process of getting compensation for an injury caused by someone else’s negligent behavior. These cases involve one party, the plaintiff, trying to seek financial compensation for expenses incurred and money lost as a result of the defendant’s reckless behavior. These cases involve both parties’ insurance companies and may even settle before proceeding to litigation.

Examples of Personal Injury Claims in  Alaska

Some personal injury claims are more common than others. However, almost any incident that ends with a physical or mental injury could qualify, depending on the circumstances.

A few of the most common personal injury claims are:

  • Car Accidents
  • Slip and Fall
  • Dog Bites
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Workplace Accidents
  • Burn Injuries

Most Common Injuries in Alaska 

According to Alaska Regional Hospital, the top 5 reasons for Alaskans to seek emergency room care are chest pain, stroke symptoms, serious head injuries, excessive bleeding, and poisoning. The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services states that the leading cause of injuries in Alaska is transportation. Due to the consistently unpredictable and treacherous road conditions, as well as the variety of transportation available to Alaskans.

Steps in a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Alaska

Once you determine that you wish to proceed forward with a personal injury action in Alaska

A lawsuit begins when a complaint is filed with the court and served on the defendant. The complaint alleges your assertion as the plaintiff that the defendant’s negligent behavior resulted in damage to your body or mental state. As the process proceeds forward, you may have to go through depositions, independent medical evaluations and document production. This discovery process is lengthy and ends in either settlement or a court appearance.

In Alaska, the plaintiff or injured party drafts a complaint which explains the cause and reason for your claim. This will be filed in either small claims court, or civil court. If your suit is for under $10,000, it will be dealt with in small claims court. Any suit with a higher amount will be resolved by the civil division of courts, according to Alaska’s Department of Law.

Alaska Personal Injury Settlement

With most personal injury cases, insurance companies and injured parties prefer settlement negotiations rather than going to court for a trial. You may wonder how much you should seek in your settlement and factors that impact the final amount.

Oftentimes, in Alaska, the most expensive part of a Personal Injury suit are the legal fees. This makes selecting the right lawyer all the more important. Usually defendants are ordered by Alaska courts to pay up to about 30% of the plaintiffs legal fees according to the Alaska Trial Lawyers blog. With the average pain and suffering claim awarding about $15,000, this could leave you on the hook paying fees for your own injury settlement.

If the other party has insurance, the insurance company likely wants to settle out of court to avoid leaving the final settlement decision to a jury. Settlements benefit injured parties as much as they do insurance companies. This is because accepting a settlement means you receive compensation sooner rather than later. Also, by going to court in , that means you risk not receiving any compensation at all.

Damage Awards in Alaska

If your Alaska personal injury lawsuit goes before a judge or jury, your legal team will be ready with a request for damages. In personal injury cases, there are three types of damage awards a court may order the defendant to pay to compensate you for the damage he or she inflicted.

Special compensatory damages reimburse you for things such as lost income, medical bills and insurance deductibles. You submit receipts proving these losses.

General compensatory damages are subjective. If you receive special compensatory damages, you may also collect general damages. If your injury was particularly painful, you might request that the judge order the defendant compensate you for the pain and anguish.

Punitive damages are the most rarely awarded and are up to the court. The judge or jury may determine that the defendant’s negligence was particularly heinous and the resulting injury to you was equally horrific. 

Alaska has some fairly unique damage cap laws when compared to other states. You won’t see a cap on your economic damages in Alaska. However, the state does place a cap on what it calls “non- economic losses”. These are things you can’t tabulate in numbers like personal pain and suffering or disfigurement. These “non-economic losses” can see limitations based on the severity of the injury, and the plaintiffs life expectancy.

Statute of Limitations in Alaska Personal Injury Law?

The injured party may have a set amount of time to file suit for a personal injury case. State law establishes statutes of limitation. Commonly, the plaintiff’s injury or discovery of the injury begins the statute of limitations. However, the latter factor is trickier, as the plaintiff will have to prove when the injury was first realized.

Alaska allows those seeking to file a personal injury suit two years from the date of their accident to file a claim. We recommend you speak with a personal injury lawyer for this matter. Don’t wait too long and miss out on receiving the compensation you deserve for your injury. 

Work With an Experienced Alaska Lawyer

Pursue a personal injury claim in Alaska against the responsible person if you are dealing with an injury caused by someone else. One of our experienced lawyers can help you navigate your personal injury claim.  We can even help you connect with an attorney across Alaska state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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