When tragedy strikes, a countdown starts. If you or someone you care about gets hurt in a motor vehicle accident and wants to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, you must be aware of a deadline known as a “statute of limitations” or “prescriptive period.”
In Louisiana, statutes of limitations have serious implications for personal injury cases and the compensation injured victims can pursue. Once you are involved in an accident, the clock starts ticking on how long you have to bring a suit against the at-fault driver. With the help of the experienced motor vehicle accident lawyers at Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers, you can file your lawsuit on time and maximize your chances of receiving the best possible compensation.
What Is a Statute of Limitations?
A “statute of limitations” is a legal term that refers to state laws governing the maximum time parties involved in disputes have to file court lawsuits. This time limit typically runs from the date of the alleged offense.
What Is the Deadline for Filing Motor Vehicle Accident Lawsuits in Louisiana?
All states have deadlines for filing personal injury lawsuits, including Louisiana. These statutes vary considerably from state to state, as does the type of lawsuit involved.
In Louisiana, injured victims have one year from the date of the accident to file a motor vehicle accident lawsuit. This Louisiana statute of limitations covers all types of motor vehicle accidents, including accidents involving cars, SUVs, trucks, pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, and passengers. Louisiana property damage lawsuits must also be filed within one year.
A year may seem like a long time, but in this scenario, it’s not. If you don’t file your case before the one-year deadline, you may lose your ability to recover any damages. The court may dismiss your case.
It’s important to note that Louisiana’s statute of limitations don’t apply to insurance claims. Insurance companies require policyholders to notify them promptly or within a reasonable period after a crash for them to investigate the crash. For most policies, this period is typically a few days or weeks.
How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Action in Louisiana?
The Louisiana statute of limitations for wrongful death actions is one year from the date of death, not the date of the accident. If you’ve lost a loved one in a car accident, you may be eligible to receive wrongful death benefits. The legal team at Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers understands that no amount of money can bring back your loved one. Our attorneys are ready to build a strong case to ensure the defendant is held accountable for their negligence and that justice prevails.
Are There Exceptions to Louisiana’s Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases?
Although the Louisiana statute of limitations is one year, several exceptions exist that generally “pause” or extend this deadline, including:
- The child is a minor. The one-year deadline is suspended until they turn 18.
- The discovery rule. Here, the deadline starts once the cause of the injury is discovered.
- The plaintiff is mentally incompetent.
- The defendant declares bankruptcy.
- The accident involved multiple parties.
Injured in a Car Accident? Call Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers Today
Time is of the essence when it comes to Louisiana motor vehicle accident lawsuits. If you feel lost or confused about the deadlines for your case, call us at (318) 221-1508 to schedule a free case evaluation. Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers is here to help.