Cumberland County Injury Statute Limitations for Minors
Every personal injury lawsuit in Cumberland County has a statute of limitations, which is the amount of time an injured party has to file the lawsuit. If they file a lawsuit after this time, the court may dismiss the case, barring the injured party from receiving compensation for their injuries.
These statutes of limitations are typically strictly upheld by the courts. But in the case of minor children, the statutes may not be as clear. This is because those under the age of 18 are not eligible to file a personal injury claim on their own as the courts will not consider them to have the capacity needed to do so.
This leaves the parents or guardians of the child with several options regarding a personal injury claim if their child suffered an injury. A local attorney can discuss these options. But whichever option a family chooses will still have a statute of limitations on a Cumberland County claim involving a minor to think of, so it is always important to contact an attorney at the earliest possible opportunity after the child suffered an injury.
Parents Filing on Behalf of Their Child
When a child suffers an injury, the parents can pursue a lawsuit. Although the child will not be able to file the lawsuit on their own, their parents can act on their behalf. However, the child may still testify to provide details pertaining to the accident.
What is the Statute of Limitations for Minors in Cumberland County?
If the parents, or the child, decide not to file a lawsuit immediately, the child may still be able to do so later. The law provides that, in most cases, the child can wait until they are no longer a minor and file a lawsuit on their own. For most injury cases, the statute of limitations will be two years from the date of the child’s eighteenth birthday. Here too, there are exceptions.
Medical malpractice lawsuits have several different statute of limitations in cases that involve minors. With most of these cases, the statute of limitations will still be two years after the minor’s eighteenth birthday. In the case of injuries that occurred at birth, however, a person may have less time.
For minors who suffered injuries at birth and were born before July 2004, they may still have a statute of limitations of two years from their eighteenth birthday. However, minors who suffered injuries at birth and were born after July 2004 may only have until their thirteenth birthday before the statute of limitations runs out.
While rarer, a minor may also have a valid case against a government entity. For example, they may have suffered injuries due to dangerous conditions in a public park. In cases like these, minors may have 90 days from the date of their eighteenth birthday to file a claim.
Get the Help of a Cumberland County Attorney
While they seem like simple guidelines at first, the statute of limitations for injury cases can become very complicated. And even more so when the injured individual is a minor.
If you or your child suffered an injury, speak with a personal injury attorney in Cumberland County to review your options. An attorney can help determine if it is best for the family to file a lawsuit immediately or wait to allow the child to decide whether they want to file a claim once they are no longer a minor. An attorney can also help parents and guardians understand the many different statutes of limitations that may apply to their case so families can make an informed decision.