Suffered an personal injury? Here are time frames to consider legal action
byBy Aaron Novasic If someone is injured through no fault of their own, they should consider pursuing legal action. That legal action has several steps, but the lawsuit must be filled with the appropriate jurisdiction and within a time frame. That time frame is known as the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a hard line in the sand that must not be taken lightly. Once the statute of limitations passes, one will be barred from suing the responsible party. In personal injury cases arising out of accidents, such as motor vehicle accidents and slip and falls, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of the accident. That means whatever day you were in a car crash, or maybe tripped at a store for example, add two years and that is the deadline in which you can sue the responsible person or entity. If one is injured while at work, they are entitled to recover for time off work, reimbursement of medical expenses and any future medical payments. The application for compensation must be done within three years after the date of the accident when no compensation has been paid. However, where or when compensation has been paid for example if a worker is receiving temporary total disability (TTD), the application for benefits must be filed paid, within two years after the date of the last payment of compensation. In Illinois, if one is injured due to a construction accident, the statute of limitations to file the lawsuit is four years from the date of the accident. A more common question that people have is regarding personal injuries sustained by minors, or children under the age of 18. This is very common, unfortunately. But the courts will always protect minors and do everything they can to ensure no one takes advantage of them. The statute of limitations for when a minor who is injured is two years from the date they turn 18. The difference here is that it is not from the date of the accident but rather the minor’s birthday. Essentially, once the minor turns 20, they will be barred from pursuing legal action if they have not already done so. There is an exception in Illinois regarding cases in which the responsible person or entity is a state agency. They are protected under the Tort Immunity Act. This law protects governmental entities and their employees, including public transportation and school districts. This is a quick guide to help you understand your rights and keep in mind every case is different. If you need advice on a potential injury case, please contact Gardi & Haught for an expert review of your rights in the matter. Request a free case evaluation below.