If you have received injuries from an accident caused by another party in Burlington County, you have a limited amount of time under New Jersey state law within which you can file a lawsuit. The statute of limitations for filing personal injury lawsuits in Burlington County is two years from the date of the incident or from when the problem was discovered. While two years may seem like a long time, failure to file within the Burlington County statute of limitations means you cannot sue and recover compensation for your injuries, which in turn means retaining a skilled personal injury attorney to assist with filing practices and deadlines may be critical to a successful case.
Why Knowing the Statute of Limitations is Vital
Although it may seem unfair, there is a valid reason for a statute of limitations on personal injury cases. Waiting too long means evidence may be lost or witnesses can no longer recall the circumstances of the incident. In turn, this means insurance companies and judges may have significant trouble making an accurate determination of liability, which can often prevent a settlement from being reached.
Burlington County Statute of Limitations for Minors
The statute of limitations for minors in Burlington County differs from the statute for adults. If a child was injured at birth, they have until their 13th birthday to file a lawsuit for a medical malpractice case, as the extent of birth injuries may not become apparent until the child is older.
If the child’s parent or guardian has not filed a medical malpractice lawsuit by the time of the minor’s 12th birthday, state law allows the minor (or someone over the age of 18 acting on behalf of the minor) to commence such a suit.
For personal injury lawsuits that do not involve birth injuries, a minor must file a lawsuit within two years of their 18th birthday.
Wrongful Death Claims
A personal injury case may turn into a wrongful death case if the wounded party dies as a result of their injuries. The primary criterion for filing suit in these cases is that if the individual survived, they would have been able to file a valid personal injury case.
A wrongful death suit in Burlington County requires filing within two years of the individual’s date of death. The lawsuit is typically filed by the executor or administrator of the estate.
Only certain family members may benefit from damages received from a wrongful death claim. These include, in order of priority:
- Surviving spouse
- Children or grandchildren
- Surviving parents
- Siblings, nieces or nephews
Unlike in many other states, an individual who can prove they were financially dependent on the deceased may receive damages from a wrongful death suit in New Jersey.
How a Burlington County Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
When dealing with a personal injury, the specific timing of filing suit may understandably be the last thing on your mind. However, the Burlington County statute of limitations for such incidents—as delineated by Burlington County law—is enforced without exception, which means adherence to it is required for all injured parties who want to be compensated for their losses. In most cases, a Burlington County personal injury lawyer could handle the more complex aspects of your suit, including compliance with Burlington County statute of limitations laws. If you were recently injured in Burlington County, consider attaining a personal injury lawyer before attempting to file suit on your own.