How long do I have to file a case for injuries in a car accident?

What is a statute of limitations?

The time limit to file a lawsuit is called the statute of limitations. This means you must settle your case or file a lawsuit within a certain period of time or you lose all your legal rights. The rationale for the statute of limitations is that you should not be able to bring a case long off into the future. The law places time limits on different types of cases, including car accident cases.


Time limitations can vary in car accident cases.

The good news is that in Illinois, the time limit to bring a case for personal injuries against private individuals is two years from the date of the accident. However, it is one year against many municipalities such as town, city or county governments. For property damage, it is five years from the date of the accident. Finally, for personal injuries to a minor, the statute of limitations expires on their 20th birthday. If all of this sounds confusing, it can be. Do not risk losing your rights by letting a statute of limitations expire. You should discuss any time limitations with an experienced personal injury lawyer.


It is important to present your claim promptly.

You may be dealing directly with an insurance adjuster who assures you, "we'll take care of everything." They may lull you into a false sense of security about your claim. Time passes and you go on with your life and the next thing you know, your time to bring a claim has passed. Don't let this happen to you. Second, it can take time to properly present a claim to an insurance company. You must complete your medical treatment and make a complete recovery, or heal as good as you will ever get, before even contemplating a claim. Finally, there are things which you can do which can hurt your case by waiting. It is always advisable to consult with a lawyer who handles car accident cases.


For more information about car accident cases, click on a link below or contact McCready, Garcia & Leet for a free consultation