No matter how egregious a case you may have, under Arizona law, you only have a certain amount of time to file it. Even with the best possible case, if you miss this deadline, with limited exceptions, your case will likely be flat-out dismissed. Therefore, in order to recover for your injuries and losses, and hold the other party accountable for their negligence, it’s imperative you contact an attorney and act fast.
What Is a Statute of Limitations?
A statute of limitations is a law that limits when a legal claim can be initiated. Such statutes exist in both civil and criminal law cases. A statute of limitations requires any legal action arising from an incident to be filed within a certain period of time after the incident in question occurred in order for a court to hear the case or for negotiations to occur. This is important to note as even if you intend to settle the case out of court, the statute of limitations still applies, even to negotiations. Negotiations aren’t effective unless litigation is still possible. These rules exist to protect potential defendants from being unfairly prosecuted or sued for events that happened well in the past.
The Answer: Two Years
With limited exceptions, which will be addressed below, you have only two years from the date of the injury to file a personal injury claim. On very rare occasions, a court may suspend the statute of limitations, thus extending the deadline, even without an exception, so if you have a case and the two-year deadline has passed, you should contact an experienced personal injury law firm to discuss your options.
Exceptions to the Two-Year Rule
- When the plaintiff is a minor. In cases where the plaintiff is a minor at the time they sustained injuries, the statute of limitations begins to run on the day they reach the age of majority, meaning the day they turn 18. Thus, the two year statutory period to file a case terminates on their 20th birthday.
- When the injury is discovered after the fact. When an injury does not immediately become apparent, and there was no reason that the plaintiff could have known this could happen, the statute of limitations is suspended and will start on the day the injury was discovered.
- When the defendant is absent from the state of Arizona. It is simply not practically possible for a plaintiff to sue a defendant who has fled the state, therefore in cases where the defendant has left the state, the statutory period is considered to begin upon their return to the state of Arizona.
Your Time is Limited. Let a Skilled, Experienced Team of Personal Injury Attorneys Start Fighting for You Now.
The experienced team at Territorial Law is prepared to take action on your case, and do so fast. We deliver timely, responsive, and consistent service. We won’t let any details fall through the cracks. Our award-winning team of personal injury attorneys have experience across all sorts of personal injury (and criminal law) cases and are experts in Arizona state law. We deliver results for our clients. We have recovered over $26 million (and counting) on behalf of our clients in personal injury cases. If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of another person’s negligence, don’t delay. Take action as soon as possible, with a skilled, compassionate, dedicated advocate by your side. With over 60 years of combined experience, our firm proudly serves the people of Yuma and the surrounding areas. Let us help tailor a case to your specific circumstances to offer the most personalized representation possible. Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation.