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How Long After a Car Accident Do You Have to Take Action in Florida?

When you get into a car accident in which you suffer a serious injury, you may want to consider filing a lawsuit against the other driver to compensate you for your damages. However, you need to act reasonably quickly if you hope to collect financial damages in your claim. 

Under Florida law, you do not have a limitless time to file a lawsuit. Instead, your right to sue is governed by a statute of limitations that gives you a window in which you may bring a claim after your accident. These statutes of limitation laws vary in each state, but in Florida it depends on the extent of the injuries that resulted from the accident. 

Typically, a driver, passenger, pedestrian or anyone else who was not at fault but who has been injured in  a car accident has four years from the date of the crash to bring a lawsuit for their damages. The same is true if you are only suing for property damage. If, however, a person was killed in that accident, their estate or representative has only two years to file a wrongful death suit against the negligent driver. This time period begins to run from the date of the death, not necessarily the date of the accident (if it is different). Moreover, if you are suing the state of Florida (or its divisions, counties, or municipalities), these time limits can effectively be reduced up to a year because of the requirement that the state and its divisions be provided notice up to a year before filing suit. 

If you do not file a suit within the allotted statute of limitations, it is likely that a court will not allow the claim to go through. If you have suffered an injury in a car accident, it is important to be aware of your legal rights and filing deadlines. Lawsuits are designed for a person’s injuries to be redressed, but he or she must be proactive in seeking that compensation. To learn more about these issues, consult an experienced Florida injury lawyer

Personal Injury attorney Mark Link also contributed to this blog post.

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