DON’T GET S.O.L.’D DOWN THE RIVER*
By Kris L. Williams, Esq.
Far too many potential clients contact our office after the applicable statute of limitations has already run. A statute is a law; a statute of limitations (SOL) is the law governing the time-frame in which a lawsuit or action must be filed. If you, a person whose rights have been violated and who might be entitled to compensation, do not file your lawsuit within the SOL, the opposing party can win by pointing to a calendar and the appropriate SOL, figuratively speaking. In such circumstances you can wave your rights goodbye because you have waived them. In this blog I will give you the most common time-frames required for filing your lawsuit.
When your injury arises from the actions or inactions by a public entity’s employee or agent, you must make a claim to that entity within only six (6) months from the date of the injury. With some exceptions, if you fail to make a claim within that time, your claim will be no longer be valid. You’ll be SOL’d out of court by agency’s attorneys. Don’t put off calling an attorney to be informed of your rights–six (6) months will go by before you even know it!
The typical tort (harm/damage to your person or property) carries a two (2) year statute of limitations. With some exceptions, if you suffered harm from another’s actions you have two years from the date of the accident to file with the court your actual lawsuit. Wait longer than two (2) years and, again, you’ll be SOL’d out of court.
However, if you were harmed by a medical or legal professional by their “professional” services, the statute is the shorter of (a) three years from the date of the injury or (b) one year from when you knew or should have known of the injury. With some exceptions, medical-, dental-, or legal- malpractice lawsuits must be filed within one (1) year from the action or inaction that caused you harm.
Our firm’s attorneys have vast experience litigating personal injury claims, including medical malpractice and traumatic brain injuries. If you were involved in a botched surgery, a car accident, a slip and fall, or were a victim of an assault or battery, don’t sit on your potential right to receive compensation for your injuries. Call one of our attorneys as soon as you recognize that you’ve been harmed. If you delay calling, you could risk your suit being barred by an applicable statute of limitations.
*the information provided here is general and there is no substitute for personalized and/or individualized advice.