How long do I have before filing a claim?

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How long do I have before filing a claim?

Asked on August 22, 2013 under Personal Injury, California

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The deadline for filing a lawsuit is known as the "statute of limitations". In other words, most lawsuits must be filed within a certain amount of time. As a general rule, once the S/L runs out on a case, the legal claim is no longer valid. The period of time during which you can file a lawsuit varies depending on the type of legal claim involved. In CA, there is a 2 year S/L from the time that the injury was suffered. If the injury was not immediately known, then it is 1 year from the date the injury was discovered.

That having been said, sometimes the S/L is suspended (“tolled”) for a certain period. For example, tolling happens if the plaintiff (i.e. victim) is a minor, or if the defendant is out of the state, in prison or is legally insane. When the reason for the tolling ends (the minor turns 18, the defendant returns to the state, gets out of prison or is no longer insane), the statute of limitations begins to run again.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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