On this page we will explain some of the key points of law applicable to personal injury lawsuits in Nevada, including the statute of limitations. We will also explain what the average settlement payout is in Nevada personal injury lawsuits and review some recent verdicts and settlements from Nevada.
2-Year Statute of Limitations for Nevada Personal Injury Lawsuits
All statutes have laws called statutes of limitations. A statute of limitations is a law that sets a time limit on the right to bring a legal action. Once this time period expires, the injured party typically loses the right to file a lawsuit related to that particular event. Statutes of limitations serve several purposes, including ensuring that legal actions are pursued in a timely manner, preserving evidence while it is still fresh, and protecting defendants from having to defend against stale claims. Nev. Rev. Stat. § 11.190
Nevada has a general 2-year statute of limitations that applies to personal injury lawsuits. This means, that in most cases, the injured party must file their lawsuit within 2 years or the date of the accident or injury. As discussed below, however, there are a number of exceptions to this.
Like most other states, Nevada follows the “discovery rule” to determine when a “claim accrues” and the 2-year limitations period begins. Under this doctrine, a claim accrues when the plaintiff knows or reasonably should know that they potentially have a legal claim against the defendant.
In auto accident cases, the claim always accrues on the accident date because any reasonable person should understand that they have a claim against an at-fault driver. In malpractice cases, however, the date when the claim accrues can be much more complicated.
Modified Comparative Fault
In cases where both the plaintiff and defendant are partly to blame for causing an accident, Nevada employs a special legal principle called the modified comparative fault rule. This rule reduces the compensation that an injured party can receive based on their proportionate share of fault.
Here’s an example to illustrate this concept: Imagine you’re walking to work when a driver hits you. At the time, you were crossing the street against the traffic signal. The total damages resulting from the accident amount to $10,000, but the jury determines that you were 40 percent responsible while the driver was 60 percent at fault.
According to Nevada’s modified comparative fault rule, you would be entitled to collect $6,000 from the driver as compensation for your injuries. This figure represents the $10,000 total, minus $4,000 (40 percent), which reflects the portion of fault assigned to you.
In Nevada, you can still recover a portion of damages as long as your responsibility for the accident is less than 50 percent. However, if you’re found to be 50 percent or more at fault, your damages award is automatically reduced to zero, and you’re prohibited from recovering anything from any other parties deemed at fault.
In cases where fault is divided, Nevada courts are obligated to apply the modified comparative fault rule. Insurance adjusters typically reference this rule during settlement negotiations, so it’s essential to be prepared for discussions about it, even outside of a courtroom setting.
Nevada has special laws that impose maximum caps on the amount of certain types of damages plaintiffs can receive in personal injury cases. Nevada’s damages cap only applies in cases involving medical malpractice, it does not apply to other types of personal injury cases.
Nevada caps “non-economic damages” in medical malpractice cases at $350,000, which is a very low amount. Non-economic damages includes things like pain and suffering, which is always a very big part of any damage award. This cap does not affect “economic” damages like medical bills and lost wages, and it does not affect any other kind of personal injury case, just those stemming from medical errors.
Nevada Dog Bite Injury Law
In Nevada, there isn’t a dedicated statute addressing personal injury liability specifically for dog bites. However, owners can be deemed responsible for injuries inflicted by their dog (or another animal) if it can be demonstrated that the owner was aware or should have been aware of the animal’s dangerous propensities. This legal concept is commonly referred to as the “one bite” rule.
Nevada Negligent Security Lawsuits
Negligent security lawsuits in Nevada are governed by premises liability law. Negligent security cases seek to hold property owners liable for injuries to visitors or customers caused by inadequate security. Nevada negligent security lawsuits are often based on criminal actions occurring at apartment complexes, hotels, shopping malls, and parking garages. The underlying premise of any negligent security lawsuit in Nevada is the failure of property owner to provide reasonable security measures, leading to harm or injury to an individual who was lawfully present on the premises.
Damages in Nevada Personal Injury Cases
Under Nevada law, anyone physically injured by the negligent actions of another can hold them financially responsible for their resulting “damages” caused by that negligence. Damages are intended to make the plaintiff whole by restoring them to their position before the injuries. In Nevada, personal injury plaintiffs are entitled to 3 different categories of damages:
- Lost Income: Nevada plaintiffs can get damages for any lost wages or lost income that they incurred as a direct result of the injuries caused by the defendant. Here is an example of how lost income damages work. Let’s say Billy is rear-ended by Nancy and Billy injures his back. Billy can’t return to his job as a roofer for seven months after the accident. When he finally does go back, Billy can no longer get up on the roofs, and his company has to move him to a desk job that pays $20,000 less per year. If Billy files a lawsuit against Jane, he would be entitled to damages for the seven months of lost wages plus the $20,000 per year in future lost income.
- Medical Expenses: Nevada accident victims are entitled to compensation for the full cost of all medical care and treatment for the injuries caused by the defendant’s negligence. The plaintiff is entitled to recover the full cost as long as the treatment is medically necessary and reasonable. This includes the cost of future medical treatment that may be required down the road.’
- Pain & Suffering: under Nevada law, injured plaintiffs can also collect damages for mental pain & suffering related to the physical injuries caused by the defendant’s negligence.
Nevada Verdicts and Settlements
Below are summaries of recent verdicts and publicly reported settlements from Nevada personal injury cases.
$10,975,000 Verdict (2024): A 71-year-old male, underwent a robotically assisted laparoscopic hernia repair surgery. During the procedure, the defendant punctured the plaintiff’s abdominal aorta causing major internal bleeding and the man died from loss of blood. His estate brought a wrongful death lawsuit alleging surgical negligence. The jury awarded over $10 million in damages, which included $1.8 million in punitive damages.
$10,812,875 Verdict (2023): The plaintiff was injured at the defendant’s trampoline park facility when another patron at the trampoline park jumped on top of him. The plaintiff reportedly suffered compound tibia-fibula fractures in both legs which required surgery and resulted in complex regional pain syndrome in both legs. He allegedly required additional surgeries to his right leg for evacuation of hematoma and to his right ankle for contracture/heel cord tightening. The jury awarded $10.8 million in damages, but that award was reduced by 20% based on the plaintiff’s comparative fault share.
$3,273,840 Verdict (2023): The plaintiff was stopped at a red light at an intersection when the defendant violently rear-ended him. The plaintiff’s physical injuries were not specified in the verdict summary, but they must have been major because the verdict included $900,00 for past and future medical expenses, plus $2.5 million for pain and suffering.
$4,600,000 Verdict (2023): A 78-year-old male, suffered fatal injuries when, as he made a left hand turn from southbound travel, a northbound vehicle operated by defendant struck his vehicle in a signal-controlled intersection. The estate brought a wrongful death action with allegations that the defendant driver failed to yield the right-of-way and was speeding at the time of the crash. The defendant was intoxicated and was arrested at the accident site for driving under the influence.
$50,000 Settlement (2023): The plaintiff, a 10-year-old male, was injured while a passenger of a southbound vehicle that was involved in a collision with a northbound vehicle operated by defendant when she executed a left turn in front of the plaintiff’s host vehicle. The plaintiff claimed to have suffered a concussion, cervical and lumbar strains, a front wall thorax strain, myalgia and anxiety/acute stress reaction due to the collision.
$91,919 Verdict (2023): Plaintiffs, a 19-year-old female, and her passenger, an 18-year-old female, were injured when their vehicle was struck from the rear while stopped by a vehicle operated by the defendant. The 19-year-old plaintiff reported injuries including cervical and thoracic facet syndrome, left shoulder tendon tearing and cervical and thoracic strains. She got $51,811. The passenger plaintiff claimed injuries including segmental dysfunction and strain of the thoracic and lumbar spine and lumbar spinal stenosis. She received $40,148.
$2,045,118 Verdict (2022): said her eastbound vehicle was T-boned by a southbound vehicle operated by defendant. The plaintiff reported injuries including carpal tunnel syndrome, cubital tunnel syndrome, complex regional pain syndrome, cervical disc displacement leading to spinal radiculopathy and a concussion. The plaintiff claimed she would require future care which included installation of a spinal cord stimulator and ganglion block injections. The verdict included $313,000 in past medical expenses and $1 million in future medical expenses.
$39,000 Verdict (2022): The plaintiff was operating his automobile when it was rear-ended by a vehicle driven by defendant. The plaintiff claimed he suffered unspecified personal injuries due to the collision. The plaintiff alleged the defendant was negligent and negligent per se for failing to maintain a safe following distance, failing to yield the right-of-way, failing to keep a proper lookout and driving at an excessive speed.
Contact Us About Nevada Personal Injury Lawsuits
Our firm handles serious injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Nevada, working with trusted colleagues in Nevada who also have a track record of success in personal injury cases. If you were hurt and believe you have a potential claim and you want justice, click here for a free no-obligation consultation or call us today at 800-553-8082.