Washington has three national parks, 1,462 National Register of Historic Places, 17 National Natural Landmarks, 186 state parks, and 24 National Natural Landmarks. This state is prime for the outdoorsy among us, which means they are used to tourists, and they also used to negligence cases, car accidents and personal injury suits. Maybe it was you who was hurt; perhaps it was a relative or friend. Whatever happens during your Washington journeys, if you need assistance for your personal injury case, Enjuris can offer guidance.
Washington Personal Injury Cases & Accident Info
Washington statutes online
This is where you’ll find the Revised Code of Washington. 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 Washington, you have three years to bring both a personal injury and a property damage claim. That means you have three years to file your paperwork with the court, not that your case has to be completed in that time frame.
The first meeting with a personal injury attorney is normally free of charge. (Note that other legal specialties, such as domestic relations law or family law, are different.) After that, lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means that they will receive a third of the eventual reward, plus whatever office expenses they incur along the way.
If your case proceeds 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 importance that came out of Washington's courts:
Ingersoll v. Arlene's Flowers, No. 91615-2 (2017): Can you be forced to use your artistic talents for something that is against your religious beliefs? That was the argument of Barronelle Stutzman, who owned and operated Arlene's Flowers. Two gay men who were frequent customers (and, as news stories made note, friends) asked her to arrange flowers for their wedding, and as it was against her religious beliefs, she declined to do so. They brought suit against her, as did the attorney general of Washington, for violating the state's Anti-Discrimination Statute. The courts have found that businesses open to the public cannot violate anti-discrimination laws, even on the basis of sincerely-held religious beliefs. The lower court ruled for the plaintiffs, and the higher court affirmed.
McCleary v. State of Washington, No. 84362-7 (2012): This case is actually going to oral arguments on October 24, 2017 in the United States Supreme Court, so it is entirely in flux at the moment. The basic argument is that the state of Washington is out of compliance with Article IX of the State Constitution, specifically meaning the overall funding of K-12 education. The court is in a difficult position because while the state constitution does not guarantee a specific educational outcome, children are guaranteed the opportunity to an education, and so they were resorting to drastic measures, such as threatening the districts $100,000 a day in one judicial order for not meeting milestones.
Washington v. Glucksberg, 521 U.S. 702 (1997): This is the state of Washington's assisted suicide case. Dr. Harold Glucksberg, four other physicians, three terminally-ill patients, and the non-profit Compassion in Dying challenged Washington's ban against assisted suicide. They claimed that it was protected under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, and while the District Court agreed with Glucksberg, the appellate court reversed, and the Supreme Court affirmed, stating that it was not a guaranteed right under the Constitution. Justice Rehnquist actually went back to English common law, saying that it had been frowned upon for centuries and the penalties had been particularly harsh. They even called it protection against medical malpractice and coercion. If we declared medically assisted suicide a right, we might even end up at involuntary euthanasia.
There are many issues you can solve without the help of an attorney. 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.