If you were recently injured in a personal injury accident in Florida, you’ll be interested in hearing about a particular law that applies to all personal injury cases. All states have laws on the books that sets a deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit. This deadline is called a “statute of limitations.”
Essentially, if you miss this window of opportunity and you try to file a claim after the deadline expires, the court will most likely reject your claim and refuse to entertain your case. Compared to some states, Florida has a generous statute of limitations for personal injury claims. Under Section 95.11 of the Florida Statutes, plaintiffs (injured parties) have four years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury claim for compensation.
“Can the deadline ever be extended?” Once in a while, some time goes by before the injured party discovers that their injury stemmed directly from an accident, and they miss the four-year window. On occasion (though rate), when this happens a court may extend the deadline, but this is the exception rather than the norm.
What About Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice claims have a shorter deadline than traditional personal injury claims. Under Florida law, plaintiffs must file a medical malpractice claim within two years. The deadline runs from the time the cause of action was discovered or should have been discovered assuming the plaintiff exercised due diligence. This could mean the plaintiff sought appropriate medical attention and did not ignore their condition.
However, in no event may a plaintiff file a medical malpractice action more than four years from the date of the incident, with one exception and that is children. If a child was the injured party, an action can be brought on the minor’s behalf as long as it is done before the child’s eighth birthday.
If you were injured in a personal injury accident or at the hands of a negligent doctor, hospital, or medical facility that committed medical malpractice, we urge you to contact our firm to meet with an attorney.