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. The limitation periods are extended for claimants who are under the age of eighteen or of unsound mind. 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 South Carolina, most actions for personal injury or wrongful death caused by negligence must be brought within three years from the date when the cause of action accrues. In many 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. For intentional acts such as libel, slander, assault and battery, the statute of limitations is two years. Medical malpractice claims must be brought within three years of the date of occurrence or the date when the occurrence should have been discovered, but never more than six years from the date of the occurrence. Foreign object cases may be brought within two years from the date of discovery.

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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