If you or a loved one sustained injury by using a defective product, you will probably want to file a lawsuit in order to recover damages or what the injuries have cost you emotionally, financially, mentally, and physically. However, there is a time limit or “statute of limitations” that applies in personal injury claims. Thus, it’s important to know that deadline regardless of where you file your lawsuit. Otherwise, your case will most likely be thrown out of court.
But if you are within the timeline to sue, your personal injury lawyer knows that you can sue the manufacturer if it knew that a product was harmful to you and it knowingly marketed it as being safe. This would be a case of intentional misrepresentation and/or fraud. Your personal injury lawyer will tell you that you may be eligible to file a tort-based claim against the manufacturer, especially if engaged in fraudulent activities.
What are the Time Limits?
The statute of limitations for filing a product liability claim varies from one state to the next. For instance, the minimum time limit is 1 year. However, many states have a 2-year statute of limitations while others have a 3-year time limit. There are even a few states that have a 4-year statute of limitations. If you’ve hired a personal injury lawyer in Medicine Hat, they will know the statute of limitations for your specific state and can advise you of your legal options in the matter.
When does the Statute of Limitations begin?
In some cases, the start of this time limit is relatively straightforward, depending on the nature and extent of your injury. While some injuries are easy to detect, others can be more difficult and it may be months or years before any symptoms become apparent. A good example would be a lung injury that occurred when you inhaled a defective chemical or worked around asbestos for many years. In this instance, it could be years before the damage to your lungs is discovered.
Some states start their statute of limitations at the time the injury occurred while other states begin theirs when the victim discovers their injury as follows:
When it occurs – unfortunately, if the injury is discovered after the time limit has expired, there may be little if anything that the victim can do.
When it’s discovered – many states will start the statute of limitations when the victim discovers that they’ve been injured. In states that have an injury-discovery rule, the statute of limitations for filing a product liability claim would begin the day your injury was diagnosed. Furthermore, some states’ statutes of limitations begin at the point where the victim’s injury “should have been” discovered.
On a closing note, injury victims should be aware of manufacturer’s notifications and secondary time limits, also.