Slate's Law Blog How Much Time do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

If you were injured in an accident in Santa Fe, New Mexico or in another kind of incident caused by another party’s negligence, you should be thinking immediately about your options for seeking financial compensation. While some injury victims may be eligible to start the claims process by filing an insurance claim, such as after an auto accident, many injury victims will need to find out about filing a civil lawsuit. Even in car crash cases, many auto insurance claims do not result in the claimant being fully compensated. As a result, that person may still need to file a car accident lawsuit.

When you are considering a personal injury lawsuit, it is essential to know that the law only gives you a limited amount of time to file a claim, and this time limit is known as the statute of limitations. It is important to learn more about the statute of limitations for different types of injury claims and how your case could be impacted.

Statute of Limitations for Most Personal Injury Claims

The statute of limitations sets a clock on filing a civil lawsuit. The “clock” in personal injury lawsuits will start to “tick” on the date of the injury in most situations. Once the clock runs out, then the plaintiff will have a time-barred lawsuit. Once a claim has become time-barred, the plaintiff is barred from filing his or her lawsuit.

Under New Mexico law, most personal injury lawsuits must be filed within three years from the date of the injury. While you might think three years is long enough that you can wait to talk to a lawyer, you should know that evidence can be lost if you wait too long. The sooner you can speak with an attorney, the better.

When You Need to File a Claim Against the Government

Claims against local or state governments, such as for injuries that occur on government property or were caused by a government employee, the statute of limitations may be shortened to two years from the date of the incident. Your New Mexico personal injury attorney can ensure that you get your claim filed in a timely manner.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits in New Mexico

Wrongful death lawsuits are different from but related to personal injury lawsuits. Instead of the injured person filing a lawsuit, the representative of the deceased’s estate is the party who must file a wrongful death claim. Under New Mexico’s wrongful death law, these types of claims still have a three-year statute of limitations (like personal injury lawsuits), but the “clock” starts to tick on the date of the deceased’s death instead of the date that person initially sustained the injury.

Contact a Santa Fe, NM Personal Injury Attorney

If you were injured as a result of another party’s carelessness or error, you should learn more about filing a personal injury lawsuit as soon as possible. The sooner you begin working with an experienced Santa Fe personal injury attorney on your case, the sooner you can be eligible to obtain the compensation you deserve. Once the clock on the statute of limitations runs out, there is little you can do to seek financial compensation. Contact Slate Stern Law today to get started on your case.


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