Do you have questions about the time limits to file a personal injury lawsuit in California?
The statute of limitations is an important part of any injury claim. If you’re filing an injury lawsuit, then you should know what statute of limitations applies to your case. This article will give you the definition of a statute of limitation, as well as detail some of the statutes of limitations for personal injury cases in California.
California Personal Injury Laws and Liability Rules
There is a common misconception that if you were injured in an accident, you have an unlimited amount of time to file a personal injury lawsuit. This is simply not the case. Each state has a statute of limitations for all civil lawsuits, and California is no different.
For instance, if you were injured by a city employee or by a city-owned vehicle or piece of equipment, you must file your claim within six months from the date of the incident. If you miss that deadline, you could lose your right to sue.
If you were injured in an auto accident, slip and fall or other incident involving a private company or individual, you have two years to file your claim. Understandably, there are exceptions to this general rule and it is important to get advice from an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer before proceeding with your case.
There are numerous types of accidents that can result in serious injuries and require legal action. Many times the cause cannot be attributed to one single factor, but rather a combination of many factors or even several parties. For example, an automobile accident may be caused by another driver’s negligence, but another individual’s poor road maintenance could also be a contributing factor. The best way to determine if you are eligible for compensation is to speak with an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer.
Consequences of Failing to Act Within Time Limits
If you do not file a lawsuit within the time limits provided by law, you will no longer be able to take legal action against the party who caused the accident that led to your injuries. You will have lost your right to recover no matter how badly you were injured or how clear it was that someone else was responsible for causing the injuries that affected you or someone close to you.
Although it seems unfair for injured parties to lose their right to sue just because they missed a deadline, the law does allow some exceptions—most notably if you were not aware of your injuries at the time they occurred or if you were under 18 years old at the time your injury occurred.
The California law states that both parties hold some fault in a car accident. This means that if you got into a collision with another driver, you may be able to get compensation for your injuries under the “legal principle of shared fault.”
California is one of the states that follow a shared fault law. This means that if you are injured in an accident, you can be held partially responsible for what happened. If you were partially responsible, you can still get compensation for your injuries, but your award will be reduced by the percentage of responsibility assigned to you by the courts.
In California, a fault is determined using a modified comparative system. In other words, each person involved in an accident is assigned a percentage of blame for what happened, and those percentages are used to determine how much compensation each party will receive. For example, if you were found to be 20 percent at fault for an accident and your total damages amounted to $100,000, you would be awarded $80,000 ($100,000 x 80 percent). However, if it is determined that you were more than 50 percent at fault for the accident then you cannot recover any damages at all.
This law can work in your favor or against you, depending on how the facts of your case shake out. In some cases, the other party will try to claim that you were at least partially responsible for your own injuries.
California “Strict” Liability
The term “strict liability” refers to a legal doctrine under which certain people are held liable for injuries that occur, regardless of whether they did anything wrong.
The dog bite statute in California is actually a “strict liability” statute. This means that, if you are injured by a dog bite or other animal attack, you may recover compensation from the owner of the animal even if the owner did nothing wrong and was not negligent. California law considers the owner strictly liable for an attack by his or her animal regardless of whether the owner knew or had any reason to know that his or her dog might cause such an injury.
This strict liability applies only to injuries resulting from dog bites, however. If you were injured by a different kind of animal bite or from an attack by an animal other than a dog, you must prove that the owner was negligent in order to recover compensation for your damages. For example, if you are attacked and injured by a horse at a stable where you work, you will have to show (with evidence) that the stable owner failed to act as another reasonable horse-stable owner would have acted under similar circumstances.
However, there are some exceptions to this general rule. For example, if you are trespassing on someone’s property (such as burglarizing their house) and they have a “Beware of Dog” sign up and their dog bites you while you are trespassing then you may not have any recourse against them. If you are on their property with permission (such as being invited into their home) but somehow provoke the animal into biting you then again you may be barred from recovering any damages from them.
Still confused? Don’t worry since Your Riverside Personal Injury Lawyer will guide you throughout your personal injury claim journey.
Things aren’t always what they seem. And when it comes to personal injury lawsuits, the truth is rarely black and white. That’s why it’s so important for you to know what you’re up against and understand your rights as a California resident. Working with a Riverside Personal Injury lawyer will ensure that you get the best possible outcome for your case.