Brad Pistotnik Law
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What Is the Status of Court Cases in Kansas During Coronavirus?

What Is the Status of Court Cases in Kansas During Coronavirus?

What is the status of court cases in Kansas? How are court closures and other factors influencing applicable statutes of limitations? Kansas courts are starting to move again following the shutdowns caused by the spread of COVID-19 across the state. At the end of May, the Chief Justice of the Kansas Supreme Court suspended statutes of limitations on personal injury claims. However, this does not mean that individuals cannot, or should not, continue pursuing their claims with the assistance of a personal injury lawyer.

Kansas Legislature Steps In

The legislature passed the House Substitute for Senate Bill 102 in March 2020. The legislation did not explicitly extend the statute of limitations for claims in Kansas. Instead, it granted the Chief Justice of the Kansas Supreme Court the discretion and authority to do so. On May 27th, Chief Justice Luckert exercised her authority to suspend all statutory time standards and deadlines.

There is currently no time limit on how long this suspension will last. As a result of the suspension, no legal actions will be dismissed due to the plaintiff's failure to meet the deadline or statutory time limit.

However, while statutes of limitations are suspended, district court judges, appellate judicial officers, or hearing officers can exempt cases from statutory or other deadlines. They can do this via an order in the case, or issuance of a notice of hearing to impose a deadline or time requirement.

Pursuing Claims in the Era of Coronavirus

While the statutes of limitations have been suspended, that does not mean that plaintiffs can't pursue personal injury claims. It is still possible to file claims and conduct other administrative matters related to the case remotely. Since most personal injury claims are settled out of court, delaying filing will only delay the recovery of compensation.

However, the reduction in staffing for government offices, medical offices, etc. can impact the pursuit of claims right now. For example, it may take longer to secure accident reports, medical records, and recordings made on emergency calls. It may also take longer to perform independent medical exams, complete accident reconstructions, perform diagnostic tests, undergo therapeutic appointments or schedule surgical procedures to correct the damage caused by an injury.

Preparing for Challenges

Defendants in personal injury claims will most certainly argue that plaintiffs failed to undergo the appropriate testing and treatment for their injuries. However, it is likely the courts will throw these challenges out in light of the pandemic's closures and disruptions.

Thus, individuals should attempt to resume their treatments as soon as possible. It is also advisable to work closely with a personal attorney to start the process of pursuing a claim sooner rather than later. This can help preserve and gather the evidence required to pursue the claim and expedite the recovery of compensation successfully.

Contact Brad Pistotnik Law at 1-800-241-BRAD or call us on our local line at 316-684-4400. Our firm represents clients injured in motor vehicle accidents, work-related accidents, and other personal injury lawsuits in Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, or Texas. Our offices are open and our team is able to assist you during the current pandemic. You can call Brad Pistotnik on his cell at 316-706-5020. You can reach Tony Atterbury on his cell at 316-617-9237.