Automobile accidents in a border town such as Bristol Tennessee and Bristol Virginia can provide challenges even for experienced attorneys. Automobile Accident law differs in each state. For example, the statute of limitations in Virginia is two years. On the Tennessee side you only have one year to file your injury claim and I know some of you are wondering, “do you have the grounds to seek compensation after a truck accident?” On one case I handled, a client that was right on the state line when he was plowed into by another vehicle. He was unfortunately sustained serious injury. The impact first took place on the Tennessee side but knocked his car across the line into Virginia. I was prepared to have a little fun with the jury by stating that “this is a case that my client was hit so hard that he was knocked into another state by the defendant”.
All fun aside, these type of cases can be effectively handled with a lawyer who is versed in both states tort laws as well as insurance law and subrogation law. For example, in Tennessee, when the victim of a car crash has his own auto policy pay for medical treatment, he must at the end of the case pay this amount back to his carrier if he recovers from the defendant’s insurance carrier. In Virginia, fortunately the plaintiff does not have to reimburse medical pay coverage to his carrier.
In the realm of workers compensation, these issues arise routinely. A worker, who is a resident of Virginia and works for a Virginia employer may be at a work site in Bristol, Tennessee and sustain an injury. Where is the appropriate jurisdiction to file the claim? Sometimes the employee, as in this example may “elect” to file in either jurisdiction. However, if not careful, the employer’s insurance carrier may push the employee into the jurisdiction that best suits it. That is why it is critical to confer with an experience workers compensation attorney.
These are just three of many differences that residents from border towns like Bristol, Johnson City or Kingsport, Tennessee and Virginia must address. There are many others. Michael Large, being licensed in Tennessee, Virginia and North Carolina routinely deals with the conflicts in law and procedure that these matters raise in the legal fields of personal injury, workers compensation and nursing home neglect cases.