The statute of limitations is the time period after an accident when you can seek legal action against the negligent party responsible for your injuries. So what is the statute of limitations to file a car accident case in Indiana?
The Law Offices of Stewart & Stewart explains the statute of limitations for seeking compensation for medical bills and other costs after a car accident. You have a right to file a claim to seek compensation for your injuries.
The Statute of Limitations in Indiana for a Car Accident Personal Injury Case
What is the statute of limitations to file a car accident case in Indiana? In most cases, the statute of limitations to file a lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident, except under certain circumstances. The time to file a claim is also often two years, with rare exceptions.
In cases where there is a longer statute of limitations, it is often difficult for both sides to collect the appropriate evidence and witness testimony. Witnesses move or forget the events of the accident, and security footage gets corrupted or deleted.
Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations
Some exceptions do exist to the statute of limitations in Indiana. Exceptions include when the victim is a child under the age of 18, when the negligent party is an uninsured or underinsured motorist, and when the negligent party is a municipality or government entity. In these situations, the statute of limitations varies depending on specific factors of the case.
Cases in Which the Victim Is a Minor Child
If a party who suffered injuries in a car accident is under 18 years of age, the statute of limitations begins two years from the date of their 18th birthday, effectively ending on their 20th birthday. However, if the minor child was with legal adults in the accident, you should include the child in the claim, as the insurance company will likely treat all vehicle occupants as a single party.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Claims
In a collision with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, rather than a personal injury claim, you would have a contract claim that you file through your own insurance. The standard statute of limitations for contract claims is seven years, although you will need to review your policy, as insurance companies can reduce the amount of time for a contract claim to as little as three years.
The insurance company wants to be able to pursue the uninsured motorist for damages if they have to pay your claim. A shorter claim period gives them a higher likelihood of pursuing legal action against the negligent driver.
Municipal and Government Statute of Limitations
If the negligent driver works for a municipality or government department, you must file a tort claim notice with the correct documentation and file with the appropriate parties. This documentation will notify the parties of the upcoming lawsuit.
Legal Disability Claims
If your injuries result in a disability or incapacity, you have two years from the date of the removal of your disabled or incapacitated status to file your claim.
Wrongful Death Claims
If the victim passes away within the two-year statute of limitations, the state will extend the statute of limitations an additional 18 months from the date of death.
Contact Us at The Law Offices of Stewart & Stewart in Indiana
So what is the statute of limitations to file a car accident case in Indiana? In most cases, you will have approximately two years to file your case with the courts. Call us today at the law offices of Stewart & Stewart at 800-33-33-LAW or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.