Posted on behalf of Stephens, Anderson & Cummings on Jul 28, 2017 in Personal Injury
If you were injured because of another’s negligence, an effective method for recovering compensation for your pain and suffering is to bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.
However, you must bring your claim within a specific timeframe for it to be considered valid. This is known as the statute of limitations, and if you fail to file your claim within this timeframe, you will lose your right to pursue compensation.
Stephens, Anderson & Cummings’ personal injury attorneys in Fort Worth are dedicated to protecting the rights of victims of negligence. We have represented numerous personal injury claims and will work to help ensure your claim is properly filed within Texas’s statute of limitations.
How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Case?
Each state imposes its own statute of limitations for various forms of negligence claims. In Texas, you have a two-year statute of limitations to pursue a legal action for the following claims:
- Personal injury
- Car accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Wrongful death
The two-year timeframe begins on the date your injury or the accident that caused your injury occurred.
If you are filing a claim because a loved one was killed by another’s negligence, you have two years from the date of the death to bring a claim against the at-fault party.
Can the Statute of Limitations Change?
Generally, the statute of limitations is a strict rule that you must follow if you are filing a personal injury claim. However, Texas does allow some exceptions that could change the two-year deadline. It is best to consult a reputable personal injury lawyer to determine the time limits that apply to your case.
The Discovery Rule
The discovery rule can be used to extend the statute of limitations for a personal injury claim if the victim did not find out he or she was injured until after the accident.
Under this rule, the statute of limitations will begin on the date the victim discovered, or should have reasonably discovered, his or her injury.
If the victim of a personal injury claim is a minor under the age of 18, the statute of limitations can be suspended, or tolled.
In this situation, the statute of limitations will resume once a minor turns 18 years old. The victim will then be required to follow the standard two-year deadline to file a claim.
The statute of limitations can also be tolled if the victim is found by the court to be mentally incompetent or unsound and is incapable of making reasonable decision.
Once the court finds the victim to have regained his or her ability to function competently and independently, the statute of limitations will resume.
Out of State Defendant
If the at-fault party in personal injury case, referred to as the defendant, is out of state at any point during the legal proceedings, the statute of limitations will be tolled during this period. The deadline will resume once the defendant has returned to the state.
Contact an Attorney
It is imperative that you follow the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim after being injured because of another’s negligence.
Although you are not required to have legal representation when handling an injury claim, an experienced attorney can be an invaluable asset during this time.
Our qualified staff of personal injury lawyers have decades of combined experience representing personal injury victims in Texas. Do not hesitate to contact us for a free, no obligation consultation to ensure you meet Texas’s statute of limitations.
We only work on a contingency fee basis, which means all of our services are available for you at no upfront cost. We only require payment if we are able to recover compensation for your claim.