When the Statute of Limitations Runs Out on an Injury Claim
The statute of limitations is strict deadlines that set the maximum time a person has to bring a legal proceeding after they have been involved in an accident. From the time that your accident occurs, the clock starts ticking on the amount of time that you have left to file your lawsuit. In Florida, the statute of limitations is four years from the time of the accident or when you discover your injuries.
What happens when the statute of limitations runs out in your personal injury claim? In general, you will be barred from bringing a successful claim against a party who has caused you harm, which is why states tend to give plenty of years for you to start working with an attorney. However, there are some instances where the clock could stop ticking based on your circumstances, actually giving you more time to bring your injury claim.
The Discovery Rule in an Injury Case
The “discovery rule” comes into play in injury claims when a victim does not know that they were injured in an accident. The clock will not start running until the injured victims actually knows that they received an injury from the accident. An example of this would be a situation where a victim is involved in a car accident, receives medical care, and goes home. Months down the road, they start having pain and symptoms associated with a spinal cord injury. Even though their symptoms didn’t start right off the bat, they are now impacted by these injuries that were caused by the car accident. A victim will be able to bring a claim and the clock will not start ticking on the statute of limitations until their injuries have been confirmed.
When a Minor Has Been Injured
When a person is a minor at the time of their accident, many states will not start the clock on the statute of limitations until the victim is age 18. This means that, if you were injured in a car accident when you were 16 years old, you will have time before you bring a lawsuit against another party. This means extra healing time until you must bring your claim.
Other Circumstances That Extend the Statute of Limitations
There are other rare circumstances that can play a role in extending the statute of limitations as well but an attorney is the only person who can advise you of the laws and regulations in your particular state. This is why, if you believe your circumstances call for an extension on the time limits, it is important that you speak with an accident attorney as soon as possible.
How a Florida Accident Attorney Can Help You
Our personal injury attorneys at Sheftall & Associates are dedicated to assisting you through every step of your injury claim. If you have been injured in a Florida car accident and believe that another party’s negligence is to blame, it is important to act quickly so that you can retain your rights and be successful in your claim. You have options and we will ensure that you are protected as you work toward compensation you deserve. Please contact an accident attorney in Florida at (904) 575-9026 for more information.