How long do you have to file a personal injury claim after an accident?

If you have sustained injury due to an accident, you might want to file a personal injury claim to help you get the compensation that you deserve. Regardless of the nature of your accident, you are entitled to some compensation if you can prove it’s a result of someone else’s negligence. So whether it’s a fall, slip, car accident, dog bite, or an accident at work, filing a personal injury claim can get you your deserved personal injury compensation.

But to get your deserved compensation, you need to understand the nature and severity of your injuries. Unfortunately, that understanding will typically require some time, causing you to delay pursuing your injury compensation.

For minor injuries, you might be able to complete the treatment within a few days or weeks. However, more severe injuries may demand ongoing medical treatment without a clear or specific end date. In addition, some seemingly minor accidents may bring about severe damage, causing the treatment to linger for months.

Due to this, you may be concerned about knowing how long you have to file a personal injury claim after the accident date to ensure you’re within the allowed time frame for pursuing an injury claim.

Every kind of lawsuit (including accident compensation claims) has a deadline for going to court and filing a case, which is called a statute of limitations. Not filing your claim on time can cause you to lose your chance of recovering damages via settlement or court order. And even if you get any, you are unlikely to get your deserved compensation.

The statute of limitations for personal injury after an accident

Typically, most states allow you a three-year time limit to file your injury claim and get the compensation you deserve. Although in some rare cases, a court may grant exceptions to this limitation period for personal injury based on the severity of the condition.

You may get extensions if your injury is due to medical negligence. So the three-year clinical negligence limitation period would commence from the day you became aware of the clinical negligence that led to your injury, also known as the “date of discovery.”

Also, individuals who sustained severe injuries and became incapacitated for an extended period might have been unable to file a claim. Thus, they will have three years from the date of recovery to claim.

That said, you should start your injury compensation claim almost immediately after the accident to help you stand a greater chance of building a solid case. Call an injury lawyer as soon as possible. Don’t wait until you have fully healed to file your case because of the following reasons:

1. You may forget the details

Filing your claim when the accident is still fresh will help you remember the event’s details. When you wait for too long, not only your body will heal, even your mind will. Thus, it may be challenging to remember the sequence of events and the necessary details for driving the case to success.

Plus, before you call an injury lawyer, it’s essential to have the details well preserved in your memory so as to ensure smooth communication. If you can’t remember the details, your injury lawyer may not be able to work as effectively as expected, which may affect the amount of compensation you get at the end of the day.

2. The evidence may get tampered

When filing a lawsuit, one of the most critical factors that determine the success of your case is the validity and relevance of your evidence. Your evidence should be as current and raw as possible to help you stand a better chance.

Filing your case on time can save you from the deterioration or tampering of evidence and help you build a strong case. For instance, if you have pictures or videos as evidence, your device may develop irreparable faults or become lost or misplaced. And if you will be presenting witnesses, they may forget some important details about the accident or become unavailable after a long time.

3. It gives your attorney little time

When you call an injury lawyer for your accident claims, he needs time to prepare your case and connect the evidence. Your lawyer also needs to scrutinize your case to ensure that it’s viable and the chances of winning are high.

Not reaching out to your lawyer on time gives them very little time to prepare, and most attorneys do not like to take such cases.

Finally, filing your case as soon as possible makes the court understand that you take the case seriously. Putting it off for a long time without an extension grant from the court may seem like you aren’t serious about your demand recovery and may weaken your case due to insufficient preparation time.

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