Driving along Oklahoma's legendary Route 66, it can be easy to let your eyes wander – but that is what leads to car accidents, personal injuries and negligence cases. Then it's a tiring dance of figuring out where to place blame and liability. Maybe it was you who was injured; maybe it was a friend or relative. Whatever happens during your Oklahoma journeys, if you need guidance for your personal injury case, Enjuris can help.
Oklahoma Personal Injury Cases & Accident Info
Oklahoma statutes online
This is where you’ll find the Oklahoma statutes. The website has details about how long you have to bring a case, monetary limits on personal injury cases (which are also known as damage caps), and other important information.
In Oklahoma, you have two years to bring both a personal injury and a property damage claim. That means you have only two years to file your paperwork with the court, not that your case has to be completed in that time frame.
The initial meeting with a personal injury attorney is normally free. (Note that other legal specialties, such as domestic relations law or intellectual property law, are different.) After that, lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means that they will take a third of the eventual reward, plus whatever office expenses they incur along the way.
If your case goes to trial, that percentage could rise to 40% of the eventual reward or judgment. These numbers aren't determined by law, so don't be surprised if your lawyer suggests something else.
These are some cases of legal significance that came out of Oklahoma's courts:
Craig v. Boren, 429 U.S. 190 (1976): This Supreme Court case discussed intermediate scrutiny regarding gender-based laws. Oklahoma had instituted a law that stated 3.2% "non-intoxicating" beer could not be purchased by males younger than 21, but females could over the age of 18 could purchase it. The Court found that this violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, as the state could not prove an important governmental objective. This standard of review was dubbed "intermediate scrutiny."
Ake v. Oklahoma, 470 U.S. 68 (1986): Defendant Ake brutally murdered an Oklahoma family, and his psychiatric fitness was called into question. When his trial began, he intended to rely on the insanity defense, but he could not afford a psychiatrist. He asked that the court provide one, and the court refused. As he could not afford one himself, being indigent, the court directed the jurors to find Ake sane at the time of the crime. He was convicted on all counts. The Supreme Court reversed this conviction, finding that the court is required to pay for an indigent defendant's psychiatrist if he or she is unable to pay for one.
Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535 (1942): The Supreme Court held that compulsory sterilization for criminals is unconstitutional if the sterilization treats certain criminals differently (e.g., habitual criminals versus white collar criminals). Under Oklahoma's Habitual Criminal Sterilization Act of 1935, Jack T. Skinner had been convicted for three crimes: chicken thievery and twice for armed robbery. The sterilization was eugenic in nature, intended to weed out the unsavory sort from the gene pool. However, because white collar crimes were excluded, this law violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
There are many issues you can solve without the help of a lawyer. If you don't know where to start, a law librarian can help you. They are usually legally trained, and they can help you both with texts or online research engines like LexisNexis or Westlaw.