New Orleans Car Accident Claim Statute of Limitations
According to 2017 Louisiana Crash Data Reports, there were 47128 injury accidents in Louisiana with 75982 total injuries, including 6704 injury accidents with 11257 injuries in the Orleans parish. A car accident can affect your future. Treating your injuries can be expensive, especially if you miss work during your rehabilitation and recovery. When hit by another driver, you could file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit to recover your medical expenses and lost wages. However, you have a limited time to do so, and it may require help from a New Orleans car accident claim attorney.
Louisiana Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is simply a state law that limits the maximum amount of time you to begin legal proceedings following an injury. Louisiana’s statute of limitations are called liberative prescriptions, and impose some of the shortest time limits in the country. You have one year to file a personal injury lawsuit or property damage lawsuit following a car accident.
In most cases, the countdown to this deadline begins the day of your accident. If you attempt to file a lawsuit after this deadline expires, the defendant’s attorney will make a motion to dismiss your case, and the court will most likely grant it. It’s vital you abide by this time limit, if you want to recoup your losses.
Exceptions to the One-Year Rule
While you usually have one year from the date of the accident to file your claim, there are some exceptions to this rule. It helps to have an experienced New Orleans car accident claim attorney who understands and can explain what each exception entails. Here are some examples:
- The deadline clock may start the day you learn of your injury, instead of the accident date.
- Someone dies as a result of a car accident and the deceased person’s family wants to file a wrongful death lawsuit, Louisiana Civil Code Article 2315.2 says the case must still be brought to court within one year, but the deadline clock starts the day the accident victim died, not the date of the accident.
- Unknown at-fault driver.
- A two-year statute of limitations may apply, if a violent criminal causes the personal injury or property damage. Rare, but not out of the realm of options.
Louisiana rarely grants extensions to the time clock. The complex criteria for extensions and a personal injury attorney can only make a determination on a case-specific basis.
Insurance Claims Versus Civil Lawsuits
In your personal injury case, the statute of limitations only applies to a civil lawsuit. It doesn’t legally impact an insurance claim. However, you should never wait beyond your one-year limit to file your insurance claim.
If your statute of limitations expires before you file your insurance claim, you lose leverage during negotiations. Usually because the insurance knows you can’t file a lawsuit. Furthermore, if the insurance company decides to deny your claim, you’re out of legal options.
Hire a Top New Orleans Car Accident Claim Attorney
Whether you’re filing an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit, contact an experienced New Orleans car accident claim attorney. We offer free consults and never charge a fee, unless we win your case. Our office is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., but we’re available 24/7 to take your call at (504) 345-1111, or use our LiveChat online. Don’t wait! Every second counts! Lastly, we look forward to hearing from you.