Insurance Coverage Disputes

How Long Do I Have to Take Legal Action After My Accident?

If you were injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you have the right to pursue a personal injury claim to obtain compensation. However, the time during which you can do so is not unlimited. Every state in the country has what is known as a statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is the time limit and injured party has to take legal action after an accident. Once it expires, that person is forever barred from seeking compensation for injuries sustained.

The Statute of Limitations in California

Although every state has a statute of limitations, they are not all identical. In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is two years, beginning on the date of the injury. For example, if you were injured in a car accident and took longer than two years to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit, the court will refuse to hear your case.

That said, there are some exceptions to the statute of limitations. The discovery rule provides that the limitations period will begin when the injured victim has or should reasonably have known of the injury and its cause. Another exception to the statute of limitations is when the claim is against a city, county or California state government agency. In such cases, you must file your injury claim within six months. Additionally, such cases also have a strict set of procedural rules, so it is critical to consult with a personal injury attorney to ensure you are going about the process correctly. The last thing you want is to miss out on compensation due to technical errors.

Tolling the Statute of Limitations

It is also possible for the statute of limitations to be suspended for a period of time, which is known as “tolling.” Tolling can occur when the defendant is a minor, out of the state, in prison, or insane. When the reason for tolling ends, the statute of limitations begins to run again. For example, if the minor turns 18, tolling will end. This can introduce some major complexities into a case, so you will need an experienced attorney to handle your case.

Ventura Personal Injury Attorneys

If you or a loved one sustained injuries due to someone else’s negligent actions, you do not want to miss your chance to obtain the compensation you deserve and need to help relieve the financial, physical, and emotional burden of your injuries. At Haffner Law Group, our Ventura personal injury attorneys have over 50 years of collective experience we will put to work for you.

We take pride in being able to provide our clients with the personalized attention their case needs. When you choose to work with us, we will walk you through each step, so you never feel alone.

Contact us today at (805) 434-6393 to schedule a free consultation.