If you have been harmed as a result of someone else's negligence, you should be aware of the personal injury statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a time restriction within which you must file a claim for your damages or you will lose your right to sue.
The statutory term in California is two years from the date of the harm occurrence, although additional variables may reduce or prolong this period. The following are some of these factors. If you need help determining what your options are, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
The Discovery Rule
The discovery rule states that not every damage is visible at the moment it occurs. You have one year from the day you knew or reasonably should have known that you were harmed to file a claim under the discovery rule.
Bankruptcy of the defendant
When a person files for bankruptcy, the court orders an automatic stay, which stops any claimant from seeking to collect on debts. Your claim will not be discharged if the defendant in your case files for bankruptcy; instead, you must wait until the procedures are completed. If a delay compels you to file after the statutory term has passed, the law gives you further time.
Claims against the government
If the defendant in your case is a government body, you must file a notice of claim with the appropriate office or agency within six months of the damage event.
Injury to a minor
The two-year clock does not start ticking until the wounded kid reaches the age of eighteen.
The statute of limitations is tolled if the defendant is a juvenile, is in jail, is crazy, or cannot be reached because he is out of state. The statute of limitations does not begin to run until the circumstance that rendered the defendant unavailable is removed. This might happen when the defendant reaches the age of 18, is released from jail, regains mental ability, or returns to the state.
The statute of limitations is a crucial safeguard for defendants who should not have to live their lives with the threat of a personal injury lawsuit hanging over their heads. It pushes injured parties to act quickly, which they should want to do anyway since acting quickly permits their attorney to start gathering evidence before it is lost or destroyed.
If you have been injured in a car accident or another type of accident that was not your fault, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.