Unexpected twists and turns are just a part of life. But what happens when an “unexpected” event caused by someone else’s negligence results in severe, life-changing injuries to you? In that case, you may be able to bring a personal injury claim to recover your current and future medical expenses, lost income, as well as pain and suffering.
However, navigating the process of filing this type of claim can sometimes be tricky — and your timing can make a big difference. As such, it’s best that you partner with a reputable personal injury attorney in Brandon, Florida to handle your case. Below, we’re going to discuss some of the things you should know about the statute of limitations and how it relates to your personal injury case.
How the Statute of Limitations Can Affect Personal Injury Cases
It will be helpful to start our discussion with an example of a recent case that we’ll refer back to later. The parents of a two-year-old girl who suffered permanent brain damage after being hit by an errant foul ball during a Houston Astros game in 2019 recently reached a settlement. The netting at the ballpark did not reach farther down the baselines, which would have likely prevented the tragedy. The toddler’s parents filed a suit alleging that the Astros’ “acts and omissions constituting negligence” caused their daughter’s injuries.
Like many other states, Florida has a time limit on how long you can wait before filing a personal injury claim. For personal injury claims in Florida, the general statute of limitations is four years from the date of the accident (Florida Statutes Title VIII. Limitations § 95.11). This means that, if you are thinking about bringing a personal injury lawsuit against a third party, you’ll need to do so within a certain amount of time. The court is unlikely to hear your claim if you file your lawsuit too late.
Why Might Someone Delay a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Potential plaintiffs may sometimes choose to delay filing a personal injury lawsuit for a short period. For example, the parents of the girl injured at the baseball game decided to file their claim two years after the accident so they could thoroughly assess the extent of their child’s injuries before the case. Because it took some time to fully understand the injuries, it made sense for them to file their claim only when they had a complete picture of the facts and damages while staying within the limitation period.
Sometimes, the true extent of an injury can take time to fully manifest, and this can occur after the limitation period has expired. For some potential plaintiffs, a significant period passes before they even realize that they have suffered harm, at which point it may be too late to make a claim. In some cases, Florida law permits potential plaintiffs to seek an extension of the statute of limitations. It is better to be safe than sorry, and there is no harm in calling a personal injury attorney in Brandon immediately following an accident. This is the safest course of action — a reputable attorney can always amend your claim if you subsequently discover that your injuries are much worse than you initially thought.
Ready to Partner with the Premier Personal Injury Attorney in Brandon, Florida?
If you or a loved one was recently injured in an accident, the experienced personal injury lawyers at O’Toole Law Group are the people to call. As the most trusted personal injury attorneys in Brandon, Florida, our legal team is here to help fight for the compensation you deserve. Contact us online or call our office at (863) 533 5525 today to set up a free consultation.