If you have been injured through no fault of your own, whether as a result of a car accident, an accident at work, or a fall at a retail store, you may be thinking about filing a claim for personal injury compensation. If you can prove that the accident occurred due to somebody else’s negligence, then you are likely to be able to pursue a successful claim for compensation. Florida law sets the statute of limitations for filing an injury claim, which can vary based on the situation. However, it is important to be aware that there are very strict time limits for pursuing personal injury claims and there can be little, or nothing, you can do if you fail to act in time. In all states, there are special limitation periods are set by statute for actions for personal injuries or bodily injuries, and in such cases, monetary loss or damage resulting from an injury to the person must be recovered subject to the statute of limitations for personal injuries. If the action in its effect is one for the recovery of damages for personal injury, the statute of limitations for injuries to the person applies.
A statute of limitations is a law which creates a time period within which an individual may file a legal claim arising out of a personal injury. Statutes of limitation also apply to criminal acts and prosecutors are also bound by statutes of limitations after a person commits a criminal act. Wrongful acts which lead to civil liability and crimes can have a wide variety of statutes of limitations depending on the type of injury claim or the type of crime a person has committed. An action founded on negligence is subject to a four-year limitation period. This means that in Florida, there is a four-year statute of limitations period that generally governs all actions for personal injury that are based on an intentional tort, including assault, battery, false arrest, malicious prosecution, malicious interference, false imprisonment, or any other intentional tort, with some exceptions. As an aside, it is important to understand that a claim which is of personal injury in nature, for purposes of such a statute of limitations, does not need to involve a direct physical injury, and in some cases may cover a broad range of actions such as where the injured party has suffered mental injury, mental anguish, or mental suffering, even if unaccompanied by physical trauma to the body.
Statute of Limitations in Florida – The law in Florida includes various statutes of limitation that may or may not apply to your claim. There may be a different limitations period depending on who you are planning to file a lawsuit against, the kind of claim you are intending to file, or on other details of your particular claim or type of injury. In the context of motor vehicle accidents in Florida, Florida law sets a time limit of 4 years for an individual to pursue a legal claim against another party for damages. When the statute of limitation time period expires, the injured person loses their right to initiate a legal action against the at-fault party for damages. Once the four-year statute of limitations period runs out, it is extremely difficult to get a court in Florida to allow an individual to file their claim and have it litigated. If your car accident was caused by a malfunctioning car part or a defective vehicle, the same time limit applies to your claim and you have the right to file a product liability lawsuit to seek compensation for your damages stemming from the accident as well. Another limitations period applies to claims that are to be filed against a government entity in Florida.
For example, sometimes car accidents are caused by poorly maintained roads, dangerous construction sites, or defective traffic signals. In those types of situations, it may be appropriate to file a claim against a government entity who is responsible for your damages. In the above situation, the statute of limitations period in Florida allows an injured person three years to bring a lawsuit against a state, county, city, or other government entity responsible for road maintenance. For wrongful death claims, a deceased person’s survivors may have the right to seek compensation for damages by filing a claim depending on the relationship with the deceased person. Florida law states that a wrongful death claim for damages such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and funeral expenses, is timely if filed within two years of the event which led to the death that is the subject of the claim.
Overall, Florida’s law expressly provides statutes of limitations for almost every type of civil and criminal legal action. Although there are strict time limits in which you must have commenced court proceedings for your personal injury claim there is no amount of time that you have to wait before you can start your claim. One of the benefits of filing a personal injury claim shortly after an accident is that it will be easier to find any witnesses, they will be more likely to provide statements and their recollection of events will be clearer. Also, if there is any doubt as to who the claim should be made against it will give more time to find the proper party that should be added to the lawsuit. If you do not bring a timely lawsuit against the at-fault party, Florida law forbids you from seeking compensation for damages in most instances. The best way to ensure you don’t miss out on getting the compensation you deserve is by hiring a skilled accident lawyer to represent you!