If you suffered from an injury that was caused by another person’s negligence, you might have an interest in filing a lawsuit. But there are a few details that can prevent you from successfully filing, and one of them is the statute of limitations.
By filing after the statute of limitations expires, you could be throwing out thousands of dollars in compensation. Learn more about the timeline for filing and how it can keep you from compensation.
What is New York’s Statute of Limitations?
In New York, the statute of limitations gives most people three years to file a personal injury claim. But it’s not as simple as you might think. The statute varies depending on your type of accident. Most accidents have three-year deadlines, but some have shorter or longer deadlines.
For instance, civil assault has a statute of limitations of one year. Burglary could have a deadline of two years or five years, depending on the details of the incident. Meanwhile, medical malpractice claims have a deadline of two years and six months.
When Does the Clock Start Ticking?
In most cases, the statute of limitations starts at the time of the incident. As soon as the person experiences the harm, the clock starts ticking. There are some exceptions to this.
For instance, a medical malpractice victim might not realize their doctor misdiagnosed them until one year after their initial treatment. Because they were unaware of the personal injury until a later date, the statute of limitations starts on the date of discovery of injury.
Exceptions to the Deadline
There are several exceptions to the statute of limitations. As mentioned above, you may be unaware of an injury until after the day of the incident. This gives you some leeway.
Another exception is made for incidents involving minors. If the injured individual or suing individual is a minor, they have more time to file. You can’t expect a 12 year old to understand personal injury claims. So, the court does not begin the clock until the minor turns 18. On their 18th birthday, the statute of limitations kicks in. The only exception to this rule is for medical malpractice cases. Regardless of the victim’s age, a malpractice claim cannot be filed for longer than ten years after the injury
Finally, there’s the complicated matter of a worker’s compensation claim. Many workers don’t realize they had a serious injury until long after the initial injury. Consider this example. A construction worker hurts their hand on the job site. They report the incident to their supervisor, but the pain is tolerable. Over the next year, the injury starts to have lingering effects and work becomes impossible.
In this scenario, the worker has more time to file the claim. They were unaware of the full extent of the injury. With 176,167 worker’s compensation claims in New York during 2017, this is a more common scenario than you might think.
How Can a Lawyer Help?
Regardless of when your injury occurred, you should speak with an experienced attorney. They can tell you more about the statute of limitations in New York. Although you may think your clock expired, you could still have time.
Additionally, your lawyer can get the process started. Personal injury claims are complex legal matters. Your personal injury lawyer can do all the work. Then, you can reap the benefits.