How Long Do I Have To Hire An Attorney?

The law requires that you file a lawsuit within a specified period of time depending on the nature of the claim and the entity that caused your injury. This is referred to as the statute of limitations. Failure to file suit within this time frame prevents you from filing suit at all. In some instances, there are various exceptions to the statutes of limitation that may extend or limit the limitation periods. There may be special claims presentation requirements for claims against state and local government. For example, when there is a claim against the state, written notice must be presented within one year of the injury. For these reasons, it is important to consult an attorney as early as possible to be sure you don't miss a crucial deadline.

In Maryland, an action for personal injury or wrongful death generally must be brought within three years from the date when the cause of action accrues. In most cases, the cause of action accrues on the date of the incident, but there may be exceptions when the injury could not have reasonably been discovered until a later date. The limitation period may be tolled when the claimant is a minor or mentally incompetent.

When the action is for injury caused by medical malpractice, it must be filed either within five years from the date of the alleged wrongful act or three years from the date when the injury was discovered. If the claimant is a minor, the statute does not begin to run until the claimant reaches the age of eleven, and if the action involves a foreign object or injury to the reproductive system, the statute does not begin to run until the claimant is sixteen.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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