It seems as though it should be straightforward: If you were injured in an accident that was someone else’s fault, then you should get a settlement from them. Unfortunately, the reality is not quite this simple. There are several issues that affect whether or not you can win a lawsuit or get an insurance settlement, including the statute of limitations. Read on to learn more about this potential obstacle and then reach out to The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 right away for your free legal consultation.
The purpose and definition of a statute of limitations
The purpose of a statute of limitations in a personal injury claim is to limit situations to a certain amount of time in which claims can be filed. In state of California and Arizona, most personal injury cases have a two-year statute of limitations. This means that from the moment you were injured or discovered you were injured, you have two years to file a lawsuit. If you do not do so, then you have given up your future right to do so.
Note that there are certain situations that have even shorter statutes of limitations. For example, if you were involved in a car accident with a government party, then you would likely only have six months to file your claim.
Sometimes the date is obvious but often it is not
For certain types of personal injury, it is easy to know the date of the accident. For example, if you were involved in a pedestrian accident and broke your leg, then you will know that is the date of your injury. However, other causes of injuries can be more confusing. Of example, a person who is exposed to a dangerous drug and develops cancer over a long period of time would have a harder time nailing down the date of the injury. In this case, the date the statute of limitations began would be the date the person discovered their illness or injury.
Some injuries are less obvious than others
A complicated situation can arise when a person did know they were injured but did not understand the seriousness of their injury. For example, if a person was in a store and slipped and fell, they may feel okay afterwards. But what happens when the accident actually resulted in nerve damage or a hairline fracture, which eventually led to medical issues? It may be possible to file a lawsuit more than two years after the accident if this is how long it took them to discover the extent of the injury.
Are you confused about your case?
Are you not sure if your case can still be filed or if you have missed the deadline? Do you have an injury and are not sure if it qualifies you to file a personal injury claim? The good news is that all you have to do is contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.