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Statute of Limitations

March 25, 2018

Kissimmee Personal Injury Attorneys

March 31, 2018

If you have been injured and do not know what do next, contact a legal professional as soon as possible.  Waiting can be costly.  The law places timeframes on your right to bring a lawsuit.  These timeframes are called statutes of limitation.  Time-barred complaints will not be heard by Kissimmee courts.  The rationale for this is simple.  For certain claims, the legislature has decided that potential defendants should not have a possible lawsuit clouding their legal future forever.  Another rationale is that as time goes by, memories fade, evidence disappears, and there is less opportunity for investigators to take statements, gather surveillance footage, or take photographs.  The Kissimmee personal injury attorneys at Bryan W. Crews will evaluate your claim for free.

If you do not file suit within the statutory timeframe, you forfeit your claim.  Kissimmee plaintiffs must abide by Florida’s § 95.11, which covers the statutes of limitation in personal injury cases.  Each case is different, and your unique circumstances will dictate how long you have to bring a lawsuit. Some injuries may require that you bring a claim in as little as two years before being barred from recovery.

If you are suing for negligence you must commence your lawsuit within four years from the date of the injury.  Negligence is a legal term for carelessness or an unreasonable course of conduct that results in injury to another.  This is a general claim, and more specific claims will be governed by different statutes of limitation.

If you are filing an “action for professional malpractice,” according to the statute, you have two years.  Unlike the general negligence deadline, personal injury claims against Kissimmee professionals may be brought “from the time the cause of action is discovered or should have been discovered with the exercise of due diligence.”  In other words, some injuries do not manifest themselves right away, and when they do, plaintiffs may not know the cause of their injury either.  Florida law also allows for what is called tolling.  Tolling puts a pause on the clock.  It would be unfair to start the two-year time window for Kissimmee plaintiffs from the date of the accident if you do not know you are injured or do not know the source of your injury.

Statutes of limitation are even more important in medical malpractice lawsuits.  Florida law requires medical malpractices claims in Kissimmee to be filed within two years from the date of the incident, or two years from when the injury is discovered.  Again, tolling is an option here.  This is important, as a common medical malpractice claim stems from surgeons leaving medical instruments, such as sponges or scalpels inside of patients, which then results in infection.  However, the statute also states “in no event shall the action be commenced later than 4 years from the date of the incident.”

Bryan W. Crews is a Kissimmee personal injury attorney and his dedicated staff is standing by to assist the needs of personal injury victims throughout the state of Florida.  Do not hesitate to contact Bryan W. Crews for a free evaluation of your circumstances.

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