It is never easy to deal with personal injury. This is true no matter what kind of accident you’ve been involved in, whether it be a slip-and-fall, auto accident, medical malpractice, dog bite, or any other possible situation where you suffered as a result of somebody else’s negligence. Not only do you have to deal with the immediate aftermath, but you also have to figure out how to get your life back in order. You probably have to go see a doctor and follow a recovery and treatment path. This may involve taking time off work and losing wages. You may even find yourself suffering from emotional damage, like pain and suffering or post-traumatic stress disorder.
It can be difficult to deal with all these losses on your own. After all, seeking out medical care is expensive. You may even need to deal with property damage as a result of your accident. There is no reason for you to be responsible for the repercussions of an accident you did not cause. In the state of Colorado, if your accident was caused as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit within the civil court system.
If you choose to take this route, you should be sure to have a trusted Colorado personal injury lawyer on your side. You should also act quickly. While you do not want to rush your case, time is of the essence when it comes to personal injury. Not only is it easier to gather evidence and prepare for a case immediately after the fact, but you must also file before your statute of limitations runs out. If you try to file a claim after your statute of limitations has expired, you may be indefinitely disbarred from seeking out compensation. In this blog post, we will give you a brief overview of Colorado’s personal injury statute of limitations.
Auto accidents are among one of the most common types of personal injury accidents in the nation. There are many different types of car accidents that you can be involved in. Luckily, for the sake of clarity, Colorado state law has the same statute of limitations for all types of car accident lawsuits. If you file a lawsuit seeking compensation for “bodily injury or property damage arising out of the use or operation of a motor vehicle,” then you have three years to file. This is all according to the Colorado Revised Statutes section 13-80-101(1)(n).
Of course, there are many different ways that you may have your life affected by personal injury. For instance, you may find yourself suffering from traumatic brain injury accidents, workplace accidents, product liability accidents, and more. If you are filing a non-car accident-related personal injury lawsuit, the statute of limitations will really come down to the specifics of your case.
In general, however, all non-car accident personal injury cases are subjected to a statute of limitations of two years. This does not mean that your case has to be resolved in two years, only that it needs to be filed within two years of the accident. This is true for both cases based on the liability principle of negligence and intentional tort.
In most cases, missing the filing deadline for your personal injury case will usually end up getting your case dismissed. There is a possibility that you will be granted extra time, but such exceptions are extraordinarily rare.
It is also important to know that the personal injury statute of limitations is not the only time-sensitive thing you have to keep in mind. Rather, you should also take the statutory filing deadline into consideration. If the defendant (or accused party) knows that you have allowed the filing deadline to expire and you still have not filed your lawsuit, you will lose a considerable amount of negotiating leverage.
As we have already established, it is possible to be granted an “extension” on your statute of limitations. Such extensions, however, are incredibly rare and not something you should count on. However, if the following qualifiers apply to you, you may have a chance.
If the plaintiff (or injured person) is under the age of 18 at the time of the accident or is declared mentally incompetent and has no legal representative, then the state of Colorado may allow the statute of limitations to “toll.” If the plaintiff is mentally incompetent, this may mean waiting until their mental competence is restored after the accident. Or if the plaintiff is a minor, it may simply mean waiting until they turn 18 years old. However, such exceptions only apply if the plaintiff has no legal representative who can file on their behalf. For more details, you can refer to Colorado Revised Statutes section 13-81-103.
Furthermore, the Colorado personal injury statute of limitations may toll if the defendant flees from or “conceals himself” within the state of Colorado. If the defendant cannot be served with the lawsuit, then this time of absence or concealment simply will not count against the statute of limitations. For more details, you can refer to Colorado Revised Statutes section 13-80-118.
No matter what type of accident you were involved in, we at Injury Victim Law may be able to help. Though we are a Colorado-based firm, our team of experts and investigators is ready and available to assist personal injury victims all across the country. You should never have to pay for somebody else’s mistakes. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation with one of our experienced nationwide personal injury attorneys. Let us fight for you and get you the compensation you rightfully deserve.