How much time do I have after my accident to decide whether or not to sue?
After you are involved in an accident, New York gives you time to sue the person or entity that cause the accident. The state does cap the amount of time you have to sue. The “cap” is called a statute of limitations.
New York’s statute of limitations bars any plaintiff from suing if they wait beyond the time given to them by state law. The amount of time varies according to the type of personal injury you sustained.
Time to Sue for Your Injury in a New York Medical Malpractice Claim
The time you have to sue depends on the type of accident. The following is a sample of the statute of limitations for a specific accident:
· Medical malpractice claim must be filed 30 months from the injury date
· Personal injury claim must be filed within three years of the accident date
· Wrongful death claim must be filed within two years of the injury date
· Product liability claim must filed within three years of the injury date
Statute of Limitations Starts from the Day of the Injury
The statute of limitations has a starting and ending date. As mentioned before, the exact ending date depends on factors such as the type of personal injury. However, all personal injury claims start on the same day. They start on the accident day. For instance, your injury occurred on June 18, 2017. Time begins ticking on June 18, 2017. It does not matter if you had not decided to sue when the accident happened. Time instantly begins ticking down.
One Exception to the Rule of Statute of Limitations
New York has one exception to the rule regarding adults who want to sue for their injuries. It involves the discovery of the medical malpractice injury based on a foreign body. Many times a patient won’t know they’ve been injured for a long time after they’ve received treatment. An example of this is a surgical instrument being left inside a patient.
Since the object may not be discovered for years, New York does not put a time limit on filing a claim. For example, a person has 30 months from the injury date to file a medical malpractice claim. A person with a foreign object left in them can sue as soon as the injury is discovered.
The Wrongful Party May Play Games to Let the Statute of Limitations Run out on an Accident Victim
An accident victim may want to negotiate with an insurance company or defense attorney in good faith. This means they do not hire a lawyer or file a personal injury claim immediately. Instead, they try to resolve the issue by negotiating with the wrongful party.
An insurance company or defense attorney may use this to their advantage and try to drag out negotiations with the accident victim. Their goal is drag out the negotiations past the statute of limitations. Once the statute of limitations passes, the accident victim is no longer allowed to sue. Therefore, they are stuck with all their accident-related damages like medical bills and lost wages.
Many accident victims often hire personal injury lawyers immediately to prevent this type of tactic from happening. The wrongful party knows they can’t drag out the case because the personal injury lawyer files a claim within the statute of limitations.
Deciding Whether to Sue May Take the Help of a Personal Injury Lawyer
Many people are confused about whether they should sue for their injuries or not. They may wonder if they were at fault or do not know who to sue. personal injury lawyers are available to help people like you or your loved one injured in an accident. An personal injury lawyer will explain the law and how it pertains to your case. They will also protect your legal rights and sue or settle on your behalf.