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What if the Statute of Limitations in My Personal Injury Case Runs Out?

Speaking with Your Insurer After a West Virginia Car Accident

Sometimes, life gets away from us all. After a personal injury, you might be thrown into one of the most confusing times of your life, left to fend for yourself in a time that is vastly unfamiliar to you. With the help of your attorney, you might be reminded about many different deadlines, especially when it comes to meeting certain filing standards in your case. One of these aspects includes the statute of limitations, which is the amount of time in which you are required to bring your claim. What happens if you run out of time because you waited too long?

What is the Statute of Limitations?

First of all, it is imperative to understand what the statute of limitations is in your case before we move forward. The laws pertaining to the statute of limitations are ones that set the maximum amount of time in which an injured party is permitted to bring forward a legal proceeding. The statute of limitations is different for many jurisdictions, but most commonly tend to last one to two years from the date of the crime. If you want to file a personal injury claim, you have to meet this deadline before you are barred from filing your claim.

If the Statute of Limitations Has Run Out, Can I Make a Claim? 

Of course, there are exceptions to almost every rule and law. If the statute of limitations has passed, you might wonder if you will still be able to file a claim or if you will be unable to do so forever. There are actually a few instances in which the clock stops ticking and you might still have a chance to file, described as the following:

Discovery: One of the most popular ways that the statute of limitations is extended in many cases is through something known as the “discovery rule,” which is when you find out that you are injured. After an accident takes place, you might not always know that you have received injuries until symptoms begin to manifest, which can occur many months or even years down the line. As such, the law says that the clock doesn’t start ticking until you actually discover these injuries.

What if the Statute of Limitations in My Personal Injury Case Runs Out? Victim is a Minor: If a plaintiff is a minor when they are injured in an accident, the clock will not start ticking until they reach the age of 18. This means that some minors might have years until they have to start thinking about their personal injury claim and the help that they can receive from an attorney. 

Special Cases: There are rare cases, as well, when it comes to skipping statute of limitations rules. For instance, some cases involving subjects like sexual abuse or cases of extreme negligence might give you a little more time when it comes to your claim.


To ensure that you do not miss out on your opportunity to file a lawsuit and work toward compensation you deserve, you will want to get started on filing your claim immediately. Nobody wants to find out that they are out of luck when it comes to their case when they are not able to afford the medical bills and other damages on their own. To get started on your personal injury claim in West Virginia, call an attorney you can trust at Katz, Kantor, Stonestreet & Buckner. We have handled a wide variety of car accident claims and understand the many laws and deadlines that apply to these cases. Contact us today at 304-431-4050 for more information on how we can assist you.

Katz, Kantor, Stonestreet & Buckner, PLLC is located in Princeton and Charleston, WV and serves clients in and around such cities as well as southern West Virginia including but not limited to the counties of Mercer, McDowell, Raleigh, Summers, Monroe, Kanawha and Wyoming.

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