How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit After a California Car Accident?
In a best-case scenario after a car accident, the insurance company pays a reasonable settlement to the injured party. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case. Instead, the insurance company offers less than is appropriate to cover the damages and injuries. In that case, the injured party may have no choice but to file a lawsuit to ensure they are compensated.
If you are in this position then we urge you to contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 877-982-0707 as soon as possible. Why? Because you do not have an unlimited amount of time to file. Read on to learn just how much time you have and then contact us to get the process started.
The statute of limitations on car accidents in California
In this state, an adult victim of a car accident generally has two years to file a personal injury claim. This is on par with the timeframe in most other states and in most other types of personal injury claims. However, you have three years in the event you do not have injuries and are only looking to recover property damage to your vehicle.
There is one big exception: Cases involving government entities. It does not matter if it is local, state, or federal government – if they are a party to the lawsuit then you have six months from the date of the accident to file notice that you will be filing a lawsuit. There are a few specific situations that allow for extra time but in most cases, this is an inflexible timeframe.
You should not necessarily file a lawsuit as soon as possible
Since there is a statute of limitations, you should clearly file a personal injury lawsuit as soon as you possibly can – right? Not necessarily. At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas we will treat your case as the individual, unique case it is and offer advice on the right time to file. Generally, we will want you to recover as much as possible from your injuries before we file.
This is because we do not want a situation to arise in which you have settled your case, only to find that a treatment plan is not working. You then need a different, more expensive type of treatment but since you have already settled your case, the at-fault party is no longer responsible for paying it.
That said, we generally do not want to wait until the last possible day. There are always hiccups that could arise along the way. We want to give the process plenty of time to work within the approved timeframe, but do not want to file right away. You can trust that at Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas we will find the right time to file your lawsuit.
If you are ready to find out more about your legal options, whether you have a case, and when you should file it, contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 877-982-0707 now for a legal consultation.