How to File a Personal Injury Claim: How Long Do I Have?

How to File a Personal Injury Claim: How Long Do I Have?

Hourglass. Personal Injury Claim concept.

After an accident, the most important thing is focusing on your recovery, but you may also want to file a claim for damages against those responsible for your injuries. For accidents that happen in Missouri, injury victims only have a certain length of time, known as the statute of limitations, in which to file a lawsuit for compensation. At the Johnson Law Firm in Saint Peters, our knowledgeable personal injury attorneys are here to help assist with the timely filing of your claim and all other legal issues that may arise in your personal injury case. Call or contact our office today if you’re wondering how to file a personal injury claim.

Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury 

Under Missouri law, the victim of a personal injury accident has five years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit for damages. This applies to all accidents caused by the negligence, recklessness, or intentional act of another person, entity, or party. After the five-year statute of limitations passes, if you try to file a claim in court, the judge has the right to throw out your case and bar you from collecting any compensation for your injuries. This may result in you shouldering the burden of all medical costs, lost wages, property damage, and more not covered by your insurance.

Personal Injury Claims Against the Government 

In addition, personal injury claims against government entities have their own separate statute of limitations laws. A claim made against a government entity in Missouri requires that notice be given within 90 days of the accident in order to preserve your case for damages. Once the notice is filed, the government can either accept or reject the claim, and if rejected the case can move to the courts. This extremely small window means that it is critical that victims injured by government agencies and employees speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident.

Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations

There are some exceptions to the five-year statute of limitations in Missouri personal injury cases that may extend the deadline for victims. For example, injury victims who are under the age of 21 or who are deemed mentally incapacitated at the time of the accident have five years from their 21st birthday or from the date deemed mentally capable to file a lawsuit for damages. In addition, if the party responsible for an accident leaves the state and cannot be reached to engage in the legal process, the statute of limitations does not toll during that time. It restarts once the liable party returns to the state. 

How to File a Personal Injury Claim: Talk to Our Office Today

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident in Missouri, you only have a limited amount of time in which to file a claim for damages. To learn more about your legal options after being injured by the negligent, reckless, or intentional acts of another party, call the office or contact us today at the Johnson Law Firm to schedule a consultation of your case. 

The Johnson Law Firm, LLC, can answer your questions about what our legal practices. Contact us for a free consultation. We are located in St. Charles and serve the surrounding areas of Missouri.