10 Sep Deadlines for Cases, Homeowners’ Liability, Staff Q&A
Welcome to the Newsletter
Rana Law Group Newsletter
In this issue:
- Deadlines to Bring Cases
- Homeowners’ Liability – Homeschooling Pods, In-Home Daycare and Pool Rentals
- Get to Know Us – Answers
Deadlines to Bring Cases
With COVID-19, some people may have been slower to call a lawyer until things opened back up or it was safe to travel. For this reason, I wanted to remind everyone about common deadlines (statute of limitations) to bring cases:
- Personal Injury (automobile, slip and fall, dog bites) – Five (5) years in Missouri, two (2) years in Illinois. Medical negligence cases have their own deadlines, but typically two (2) years.
- Traffic – typically one year from your ticket. While there may be exceptions, COVID-19 and the closure of the Fine Collection Center led to some cases not getting filed. A few of our clients were unlucky to get a ticket but lucky enough that the prosecutor never filed the case, leading to the charges being time-barred from prosecution once the year lapsed.
- Workmen’s Compensation – In Missouri, typically two (2) years from the injury. In Illinois, the longer of three (3) years from the injury or two (2) years from the last payment of compensation.
Homeowners’ Liability – Homeschooling Pods, Daycare & Pool Rentals
People have been asking if there is any liability that may arise from use of their home for things not traditionally covered under an insurance policy. Some examples include running a homeschooling ‘pod’, an in-home daycare, Airbnb or renting out a swimming pool on a website such as Swimply.
Several liability issues arise from these examples of non-traditional home usage and it is important to know whether your insurance (homeowners’ or rental) will cover you or if these types of activities are excluded under your insurance. For instance, an individual could slip and fall, get bitten by the family pet or possibly drown. Homeowner insurance policies may have exclusions for incidents arising from for-profit ventures (the in-home daycare, Airbnb or renting out the pool) such that the liability could shift back to you. It is important to review your insurance policy (yes, that 30-60 page document no one reads) to find out what is and is not covered.
For the homeschooling pods, there is the added fear of contracting or passing on COVID-19. While this area is still in flux, from a liability standpoint, it would be tough to prove an exposure definitively happened from this exact situation and not some other incident. There is also the issue of public perception regarding COVID-19 exposure. Is a jury going to fault a homeowner for a COVID-19 exposure during a pandemic? It is tough to say.
As always, feel free to contact us if you have any specific questions. I prefer that phone call prior to rather than after an incident occurs. This is NOT one of those situations where it is better to ask for forgiveness than permission!
Get to Know Us
In response to last month’s newsletter, we received a few questions for the staff.
If you could only have three apps on your smartphone, which would you pick?
- Tarun – Podcasts (for both legal and fun podcast listening. I had to quit listening to true crime podcasts because I was becoming paranoid), YouTube and RingCentral (our office phone system so I can stay in touch with all my wonderful clients!)
- Sarah – My camera/gallery (I take a lot of pictures, documenting everything with photos is something I love to do), Facebook (I like getting the chance to keep up with friends and family) and a game
Are you a dog person or a cat person?
- Sarah – I would not consider myself a dog or cat person per se but rather an animal lover all around. I have a cat, a dog, a rabbit, a bearded dragon and three rats at home that I love dearly. We just got our puppy a month ago (pictured below), and he is just as spoiled as all the others!
- Tarun – I love dogs and like (understand?) cats more since I started sharing a home with my wife’s cat Maggie. Much like Sarah, I love animals in general but like them even more when I can play with them and return them to their owner.
What is your favorite TV show, one that you can watch on repeat?
- Sarah – The Office
- Tarun – Big Bang Theory
- Brittany (we keep her in the back office) – Law & Order: SVU