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The Statute of Limitations: Time Limits to Bring a Lawsuit

In accordance with a legal rule referred to as ‘statute of limitations,’ all lawsuits arising from accidents or other injuries must be filed within a specified timeframe. Failure to adhere to this law means that the victim of the accident will be barred and their right to pursue a personal injury claim will be lost forever. Each state has enacted some form of the statute of limitations that require any type of personal injury lawsuit to be filed within a specific time period after the injury or incident.

In some states, the specific type of claim can affect the time limit. For instance, some defamation claims and cases involving persons under the age of 18 might be granted longer timeframes. On the other hand, claims or lawsuits involving medical malpractice or medical negligence might be granted shorter statute of limitations.

Typically, the time limits in lawsuits for injuries to a person under the age of 18 years doesn’t begin until the victim hits 18 years. For instance, if a child was injured on his or her 17th birthday, then, in a state that has a 2-year statute of limitation, the child will have up to three years to file a lawsuit or pursue a claim for the injuries suffered.

Discovery of harm rule

Though the statute of limitations may require that a personal injury lawsuit or claim be filed within a specific timeframe, your clock doesn’t start ticking until the time you become aware (or the time you should have known) that you suffered injuries.

Note that the delay in the discovery of harm should be reasonable under the specific circumstances surrounding your case. For example, if you started experiencing abdominal pains after the initial surgery and failed to seek medical attention for a couple of years, the law might bar you from seeking compensation for the harm associated with medical negligence.

It is worth noting that Rockford car accident victims should seek the help of an experienced attorney as soon as possible. The attorney can advise on different issues regarding your case. He or she can also initiate the claim process. Nearly all professional attorneys understand the statute of limitations for personal injury cases, and thus, your lawyer can help you handle your case before that time limit expires.

In Illinois, there are several statutes of limitations. It would be wise that you learn the following.

  • Civil statute of limitations laws
  • The criminal statute of limitations laws
  • The statute of limitations for defective products
  • The statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases.

You can also consult with a good attorney and based on the type of lawsuit you intend to file, the attorney will enlighten you in terms of how much time you have to file the case.

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