We often hear questions from clients on Florida’s statute of limitation regarding their personal injury case. A statute of limitation is a time limit that a person has to bring a lawsuit against someone who has harmed them. The statute of limitation acts to prevent people from pursuing claims that are old and where evidence and records of the event are getting stale, lost, or forgotten.
It is much harder to defend a case with long lapses of time between the accident to actually getting to a trial, so the law encourages lawsuits to filed and handled on a timely basis. Statutes of limitations are also designed to prevent people from sitting on their rights for too long and also to give some protection to potential wrongdoers that they do not have to worry for the rest of their lives that they may get sued for something that happened a long time ago.
In the state of Florida, there is a statute of limitations on almost every kind of lawsuit, or cause of action that one may want to sue another person for damaging them in some way. There are also statutes of limitations on most crimes committed in Florida. For the purposes of a personal injury case, Florida Statutes, Section 95.11 states that there is a four year statute of limitations for negligence claims.
This means that you must file a lawsuit on your personal injury claim within four years, or you may be barred from recovering for your damages in Court. In some cases like wrongful death and medical malpractice, the statute of limitations is only two years and in some cases, only one year. Normally, this time limit begins to run from the date of the accident or incident in which the person was injured.
While most negligence and personal injury cases can be settled, or tried within that four year time frame, it is a good reminder to always act quickly if you’ve been injured an accident. The longer you wait, the more difficult it can be to prove your case and to maximize the value of your claim. You should consult with a Florida personal injury attorney about what statute of limitations applies to your particular case and what else can be done to protect your right to compensation for injuries, pain and suffering, and lost wages.