If you are thinking about filing a personal injury lawsuit in Virginia after sustaining injuries in a situation in which another party may be liable, it is essential to pay close attention to the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a clock, or time window, set by state law for specific types of lawsuits. Every civil lawsuit has a statute of limitations, and the clock usually starts ticking on the date of the incident that gave rise to the person’s claim. While there are some reasons to pause, or “toll,” the clock, you should never assume that you have additional time to file your claim. Once the clock runs out, your claim will become time-barred under Virginia law, and you will not be able to obtain compensation by filing a civil lawsuit.
Accordingly, it is extremely important to begin working with a personal injury lawyer in Winchester as soon as possible. In the meantime, the following are some additional pieces of information you should know when it comes to the statute of limitations in a personal injury case.
Statute of Limitations Governs Most Types of Personal Injury Lawsuits in Virginia
Under Virginia law, the personal injury statute of limitations for most types of personal injury lawsuits is two years. The clock generally will start to tick on the date of the accident or any other incident that has given rise to your claim. The statute of limitations is extended in certain types of medical malpractice cases, including those where a foreign object has been left in a patient’s body and in many types of claims involving diagnostic errors.
To avoid ending up with a time-barred claim, you should begin working with a lawyer on your case as soon as possible. Once a personal injury attorney in Winchester assesses your case, you can have a better idea of the timeline for your claim and whether the statute of limitations may be extended if you are filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Clock is Different for a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
While the statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim in Virginia is also two years, the clock will begin ticking at a different point in time. In wrongful death cases, the clock starts ticking on the date of the person’s death. This distinction is important because, in many accident cases involving life-threatening personal injuries, a person survives in a hospital for days, weeks, and sometimes even months before succumbing to their injuries. In such scenarios, the personal representative of the decedent will have two years from the date of death—which may be significantly longer than the date of the incident in which the decedent sustained the injuries—to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Contact a Winchester Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you have suffered an injury as a result of another party’s carelessness or intentional wrongdoing, it is critical to ensure that you preserve your right to financial compensation by filing your claim on time. An experienced Winchester personal injury attorney at our firm can speak with you today about filing a lawsuit. The sooner you begin working with an attorney to file your claim, the sooner you may be eligible to obtain the financial compensation you need and deserve. Contact the Correll Law Firm today online or call our firm at 540-535-2005 to learn more about how we can help with your personal injury case.