After an individual files a personal injury lawsuit, certain motions can be filed over the course of the case. Filing a motion is a formal way of requesting something from the court, and it generally needs to be submitted in writing in order for the judge assigned to the civil case to consider it.1 There are several types of motions that can be filed by all parties involved in a personal injury case, some of which will be discussed in-depth down below.
Common Types of Motions that Are Filed in Personal Injury Cases
- Motion to dismiss.
When a motion to dismiss is filed, it means the party filing the motion is looking to get the case dismissed. Generally, the party being sued would be the one to file this motion if they believe the lawsuit lacks validity. For instance, if an individual is being sued for damages for the injuries another person suffered in an accident and they don’t believe they are to blame for the injuries, they could have their West Virginia personal injury attorney file a motion to dismiss the lawsuit.
Of course, when a motion to dismiss is filed, the party submitting the request will need to provide evidence that supports it.
Another reason a party might file a motion to dismiss a personal injury lawsuit is if the statute of limitations has passed. In the State of West Virginia, accident victims can generally only file a personal injury lawsuit within two years from the date of their accident. If the lawsuit is filed after the statute of limitations expires and they have no valid reason for seeking an extension, then the defendant (i.e. person being sued) can request that the court dismiss the case.
- Motion for default judgment.
After an individual files a personal injury lawsuit, the parties being sued must respond to the lawsuit either in writing or by appearing in court. If an individual fails to respond to the lawsuit, the plaintiff can file a motion for default judgment. When they do this, they are asking the judge to rule in their favor.
If an individual is seeking compensation from a negligent party and the judge accepts their motion for default judgment, the defendant would be required to pay them the amount they are asking for.
Top Reasons to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer Following an Accident in West Virginia
Because most individuals are unaware of the types of motions that can be filed and which ones would benefit their case, they are encouraged to retain a West Virginia personal injury lawyer to represent them. An attorney will help them understand their legal rights and ensure any motions that can better their case are filed within a timely manner.
If an individual was injured in an accident in West Virginia and they aren’t sure if they need to hire a personal injury lawyer, they are invited to contact Kaufman & McPherson, PLLC to schedule an initial consultation.
Kaufman & McPherson, PLLC can be reached at:
16 Sterling Drive, Suite 205
Bridgeport, West Virginia 26330