Nebraska Personal Injury Law
Statutes of Limitations: The amount of time you have to sue whoever caused your injury or damage.
- Personal Injury – 4 years from the discovery of the injury
- Damage to Personal Property – 4 years
- Medical Malpractice – 2 years from the act
- Legal Malpractice – 2 years
- Other Professional Malpractice – 2 years
Where to Sue:
- Personal injury claims under $3,500 - Nebraska Small Claims Court
- Personal injury claims between $3,500-$51,000 - Nebraska County Court
- Personal injury claims over $51,000 - Nebraska District Court
How to Sue:
Small Claims Court:
- Forms: Plaintiff’s Claim and Notice to Defendant (Form CC 4:1).
- Where to file/How to notify the defendant: File the Plaintiff’s Claim and Notice to Defendant in the Nebraska Small Claims Court where the defendant does business or lives. After you file your claim, have the defendant served with the Plaintiff’s Claim and Notice to Defendant either by mailing the form to the defendant by certified or registered mail, or by having the sheriff or a disinterested person over age 21 personally serve the defendant.
- Proving the defendant was notified: The person making service must file a return certifying that service was made, and including the time, date, and place of service within 20 days of service. If service was by certified or registered mail, the plaintiff must make proof of service within 10 days by producing the signed receipt.
- Attorneys: Nebraska Small Claims Courts do not allow legal representation.
- Appealing a small claim: The plaintiff or the defendant can appeal for a new trial to the Nebraska District Court within 30 days of the small claims judgment. You are permitted to have an attorney on appeal.
Nebraska County Court: To avoid errors in the filing process and the dismissal or loss or your claim, or court fines, you should consult a Nebraska personal injury attorney.
- Forms: Summons (Form CC-3-2); Complaint. File your Complaint with the clerk of the appropriate Nebraska County Court.
- How to Notify the Defendant: The defendant should be notified by having a person over age 21 or a sheriff serve the defendant with the plaintiff’s Complaint and Summons. A defendant can also be served by registered or certified mail.
What to Do if You Are Being Sued:
- Time to respond to a Summons in Nebraska: 30 days
- Your insurance company may cover the plaintiff’s claim against you, so it is advisable to contact your carrier promptly after you are served. Your insurance carrier may provide you with a lawyer. You should also find an experienced lawyer to represent you.
What to Do if a Judgment Was Entered Against You:
Respond to a Nebraska Summons and Complaint within 30 days of service or you will be in default and the court will enter a default judgment against you. The court will then force you to pay the plaintiff’s court award. A lawyer can advise you on how best to proceed if a default judgment has been entered against you.
- Time to Set Aside a Judgment in Nebraska:
- An Nebraska County Court can set aside a judgment in accordance with Rule 60(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
Ways to Collect Your Judgment:
- To collect the judgment you won in your personal injury lawsuit, you can garnish the defendant’s wages or bank accounts, or place a lien on the defendant’s property. You should consult a Nebraska collection lawyer for advice in collecting your judgment.