How Soon Should I File My Personal Injury Case?

July 3, 2013  |  Adriel B. Villarreal

Every personal injury case is subject to a statute of limitations. If you do not file the case by the time the statute of limitations has expired then you will no longer be able to seek remedies for your damages through the legal system.
The statute “clock” begins ticking at one of two points: on the date the injury occurred, or the date the injury is discovered. Sometimes there can be a vast difference between the two dates.
The statute of limitations differs for different types of personal injury cases. Here are the statutes for a few of the types of cases that we cover.

  • Car accidents: 6 years
  • Animal attacks: 6 years
  • Slips and falls due to negligently maintained property: 6 years
  • Slips and falls due to defective design or construction: 2 years
  • Building security negligence: 6 years
  • Construction accidents: 6 years
  • Defective products: 4 years

There is rarely a good reason for waiting for the full statute of limitations to run out. Usually you will want to speak to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
This is because shortly after an injury occurs you’re usually going to have representatives from the involved insurance companies contacting you, pressuring you to sign statements that could significantly impact or destroy your ability to get a fair settlement. Every day that you don’t speak to an attorney could be the day that you make a mistake.
In addition, hospitals, doctors, and repair companies don’t wait to go after their money in personal injury cases. They aren’t required to go after the insurance companies.
They can call you, and if you don’t have a lawyer you may have nowhere else to turn. They can also turn you over to collection agencies who will harass you even more. You could destroy your credit waiting for the insurance companies to do the right thing.
If you have an attorney, however, you can refer the collection agents to the attorney, who will help deal with them until your case is settled.
If you think you’ve got a valid personal injury case and you’ve been procrastinating, it’s time to take action. Call the experienced personal injury attorneys at Barna, Guzy, & Steffen today. We’ll help you get the best possible outcome for your personal injury case.