Personal Injury Filing Timeframes: 4 Questions for Your Attorney

When you are injured through the fault of another and make preparations to file a personal injury lawsuit, you may have questions about time limitations and deadlines. Most states have their own laws about time statutes and how long you have to file, which could make matters confusing, especially if you are still recovering from your injuries. However, presenting a list of questions to your attorney about deadlines could make the details clearer, and there are several you can include.

1. How Long Do I Have To File? 

This is a common question, and the answer may vary depending on your state of residence. Some states, like California and Texas, allow two years from the date of the accident while others, such as New York and Michigan, allow you three years. Others may grant as many as five years, but you may want to double-check these statutes with your attorney.

2. Can I Get an Extension? 

If the statute of limitations for your state has run out, you may be able to receive an extension under certain circumstances. While possible, being granted these extensions are usually rare and you may have to prove that you were medically incapacitated and unable to file to receive one. Letters from your doctor may provide evidence for this circumstance. Your attorney can let you know what else you might need if you need to seek an extension in your individual state.

3. What About Delayed Injuries? 

There may be instances where you did not discover injuries until months after the accident. Some types of pain, such as spinal and nerve issues, may not present right away. When this happens, the time limit may not begin until you discover the medical issue. As with other types of extensions, you may need proof from a doctor that the injury did not present until recently.

4. Can I File While Being Treated? 

You may believe it is too soon to file a claim, such as when you are in the hospital and still recovering from your injuries. However, you can ask your attorney to file on your behalf, even if you have not yet left the hospital. He or she can also represent your best interests in court if mobility is an issue for you or correspond with the defendant’s insurance company if need be, such as if the insurance adjuster offers a settlement.

Knowing when to file a personal injury claim, as well as other details about deadlines, can be a puzzling affair. Contact a personal injury attorney, from Torrance Car Accident Lawyers today for further details or to schedule your initial consultation.