Minutes after recovering from a personal injury accident, strenuous after-effects related to the incident can promptly arise. From scheduling appointments with doctors, dealing with financial burdens of lost wages, participating in physical therapy, and possibly undergoing surgery, the entire healing process can be vastly overwhelming. Understandably, it is normal to prioritize urgent concerns versus issues that can be reserved for a later date, like seeking legal representation. Nonetheless, it is crucial to remember you have a tiny window of time to file a personal injury lawsuit.
New Jersey Statute of Limitations
In the Garden State, personal injury cases of a statute of limitations of two years. Normally, this indicates you have only two years to file a lawsuit against a third party to seeking damages from the date on which the incident transpired. Unfortunately, if you miss this two-year window and you do not file a personal injury lawsuit, you will likely have permanently missed your opportunity to recover damages. Hence, retain legal representation at your earliest convenience is key.
Expectations to the Two-Year Rule
There are a handful of allowances to the New Jersey’s statute of limitation’s rule. For instance, if an injured person is below the age of 18, or a minor, when the incident occurred, they are unable to pursue legal action on their own behalf and must have a guardian or parent file a lawsuit on the minor’s behalf. However, if the guardian or parent does not file a lawsuit on the minor’s behalf, the law permits the injured minor two full years following their 18th birthday to file personal injury lawsuit. Another exception to the two-year rule is if the party is mentally incapacitated.
Government Institutions and Wrongful Death
Though personal injury lawsuits uphold a statute of limitations deadline of two-years, wrongful death claims are handled completely different. This two-year window does apply; however, the period commences on the date where the decedent has passed away.
Congruently, lawsuits seeking compensation from government institutions have added conditions, including numerous imperative time constraints injured parties must be familiar with. Any legal action pursued against a public entity, state, or municipality, starts with a Notice of Tort Claim. This notice must be filed within 90 days of the date of the accident. Without the Notice of Tort Claim, the lawsuit cannot move forward, even if it is filed within the two-year period.
Nevertheless, equivalent to the minor instance previously stated, a minor has ninety days from the day of their 18th birthday to officially file a Notice of Tort Claim. Once this notice is properly filed, the two-year period still applies.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a serious accident, please call and speak with one of our expert personal injury attorneys for a free consultation.