To suffer an injury due to someone else’s negligence can harm your quality of life. If you have outstanding medical bills or if you lost your position due to the injury, then odds are you deserve compensation. Unfortunately, there are situations where a person doesn’t recognize that they can file a lawsuit. If you are on the fence, maybe you think that the injury may have been partially your fault, maybe you think it isn’t worth the time and effort. Whatever the case, it is important that you file a claim as soon as possible. Here is what you need to know about what affects your time limit.
Statute of Limitations
There is a legal rule called the statute of limitations. This means that if you plan to file a claim, you have a time limit. You do not have the right to sue for personal injury forever. Instead, you have a set time that varies state by state. In some states, it may only be one year, whereas other states may be up to six years.
If there were any witnesses to your accident or to the injury that took place, then witness forgetfulness may be a problem for you. It is important to gather witness statements as soon as possible. If you wait for too long, the stories may begin to differ. Memory is not always a reliable source and if you must rely on witness statements from months ago, you may not have a solid case.
The only time that there are exceptions to the statute of limitations is with the discovery of harm rule. This means that the statute of limitations may begin when you recognize that there was harm done, rather than when the injury occurred. For instance, say that your surgeon left an instrument or bandage in a surgical site. This might not give you any problems right away and you may not notice for years. You can bring a lawsuit after the discovery.Whenever you are filing a claim, you must file it promptly. You do not want to wait too long because the statute of limitations could expire or you could weaken your case. If you believe that you were harmed by another person’s negligence, then it is important to file a claim as soon as possible. Set up a consultation with a personal injury lawyer, like from The Law Firm of Frederick J. Brynn, to find out more about your options.