After being involved in a serious car accident, I really believed that my insurance company would take care of everything. It wasn't until I finally received their settlement offer that I realized they were not on my side at all. This is when I got wise and consulted a personal injury lawyer. It was the best decision I could have made. Thanks to my attorney, not only did I learn a lot about personal injury law, but I actually got the compensation that I needed and deserved. I made a lot of mistakes after my accident, but I also learned a lot along the way. It is my hope that this blog will allow other accident victims to learn from common mistakes and get the information they need to be successful in their own personal injury claims.
The statute of limitations places restrictions on how long you have to file a personal injury lawsuit against another party. In most instances, once the statute of limitations has passed, you cannot file a lawsuit. However, there are some circumstances that could allow you additional time to file. Here are three situations in which the statute of limitations might be extended.
In some states, if a minor is injured in an accident, the law allows him or her to reach the age of majority. In most states, the age of majority is 18 years of age. For instance, if you are involved in an accident at the age of 15, the clock on the statute of limitations does not start until you turn 18. At that point, you would have the time allotted by law. If the statue of limitations is three years, you would have until the age of 21 to bring a lawsuit in your case.
Since laws can vary from state to state, it is important to check your state's laws to determine what the age of majority is and whether or not you are allowed additional time to file a lawsuit if you were injured as a minor.
In some instances, it is possible to not be aware of injuries that have been suffered until after the statute of limitations has passed. In those cases, it is possible that the court will allow a case to continue despite the time legally allowed expiring.
The discovery rule states that in situations in which a person was not aware of his or her injuries it is possible to extend the statute of limitations.
For instance, if you were exposed to asbestos, but did not develop a related illness until after the statute of limitations has passed, you could possibly file a lawsuit.
There are many other situations in which the court might allow a lawsuit to be filed. For instance, if the responsible party fled the area and could not be located, the court might allow the lawsuit later, when the responsible party is found.
The court could allow an exception in cases involving sexual assault. Even if the time limit for criminal charges has passed, it might still be possible to recover damages from the responsible party.
If you are unsure whether or not your case can possibly be filed even though the statute of limitations has passed, consult with a personal injury attorney.Share