What is the Statute of Limitations?
Every single case has a specific limit with respect to the period of time a person has to file a lawsuit. This limit is entitled the “statute of limitations.” In general, the statute of limitations time period starts on the date of an accident / incident or injury. In some cases, the proverbial “clock” starts ticking on the date when the injured party “discovers” his or her injury – i.e. when the injured party suspects or should suspect that someone’s wrongdoing caused the injury.
Different types of claims have different applicable statutes of limitations. There is no universal statute of limitations, which applies to all cases. For example, in California, the statute of limitations for personal injury matters is 2 years, but the time limit for claims of medical malpractice is only 1 year. Claims asserted against Governmental agencies may have to be filed as early as 6 months after an accident / incident. The importance of the statute of limitations concept cannot be underemphasized – it is a hard deadline, which must be strictly complied with. If the statute of limitations deadline is not complied with, any potential rights to pursue your case and obtain a financial compensation may be lost forever.