If you are considering starting a lawsuit against the at-fault driver to recover compensation for your injuries in a car accident, get legal advice! Make sure you understand your rights. If you do not file a Statement of Claim within the limitation period, you lose your right to sue. Outlined below is information about filing a Statement of Claim in Alberta.
1. What is a Statement of Claim?
A Statement of Claim is a commencement document that formally starts a lawsuit in court. A Statement of Claim identifies the Plaintiff, the person suing the Defendants, which are the party or parties responsible for the Plaintiff’s injury or loss.
2. What Needs to be in a Statement of Claim?
Your right to pursue compensation may be impacted if your Statement of Claim does not meet the requirements of the Alberta Rules of Court. A Statement of Claim filed in the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta must be in accordance with Form 10 of the Alberta Rules of Court.
The Statement of Claim must state the claim and the basis for the claim. The relief or remedy that you are seeking must also be stated. There may be more than one individual responsible for your injury or loss. Get legal advice to ensure the individuals or parties responsible for your loss are identified and properly named in the Statement of Claim.
3. Where are Statements of Claim Filed?
Statements of Claim for motor vehicle accidents and other types of accidents are usually filed in the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. For more information, visit the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta website: https://www.albertacourts.ca/qb/home
4. When Does the Statement of Claim Need to be Filed?
In Alberta, typically you have two years from the date of the accident to file a Statement of Claim, or your claim will be statute-barred, in other words, prohibited by law. Different limitation dates for filing a Statement of Claim apply to minors. Remember that once a Statement of Claim is filed, it needs to be served on the Defendants.
Don’t wait until a few months or days before the limitation date to decide if you will pursue a claim. Get legal advice as soon as possible after the accident so that you understand your options and your legal rights.
5. Do You Need Legal Advice?
We highly recommend that you get legal advice well before the limitation date and before you file a Statement of Claim on your own. If you do not meet the requirements of the Alberta Rules of Court or if you do not file and serve your Statement of Claim in accordance with the Alberta Rules of Court, you may lose your right to sue or not get the compensation that you may be entitled to. Your ability to recover compensation for your injuries may be restricted if you have not properly identified or named that at-fault parties.
Once the Statement of Claim has been filed, starting the lawsuit, you then have obligations including service of the Statement of Claim on the Defendants and production of records. If you do not meet the relevant deadlines for subsequent documents, your claim can be struck out. You may have to pay costs if your lawsuit is unsuccessful.
Avoid uncertainty and stress. Contact our experienced team of Accident Injury Lawyers today and we can discuss the process. We handle the legal aspects so that you can focus on your recovery. Phone us today for a free consultation.
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