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 these reasons, it is important to consult an attorney as early as possible to be sure you don't miss a crucial deadline.

In North Carolina, most actions for personal injury based on negligence must be brought within three years from the date when the cause of action accrues. Intentional acts such as libel, slander, assault and battery must be commenced within one year. Wrongful death cases must be filed within two years of the date of death. 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 time limits are extended for persons who are under the age of 18, insane or incompetent.

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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