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 Wyoming, many actions for personal injury must be brought within four 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. Subject to certain exceptions, if a claimant is a minor or subject to any other legal disability, the person may bring the action within three years after the disability is removed or within any other statutory period of limitation, whichever is greater.

There are incidents that have longer or shorter limitation periods. For example, intentional torts such as libel, slander, assault and battery, have a one­year limitation period. Wrongful death actions must be commenced within two years.

Medical malpractice claims must be brought within two years of the alleged wrongful act or within two years of discovery if the act was not reasonably discoverable within two years or was not discovered despite due diligence. If a claimant is a minor, he may bring an action until his eighth birthday. If the claimant is otherwise legally disabled, suit must be brought within one year from removal of the disability. In the case of minority or other legal disability, if the act is discovered during the second year of the two­year limitation period, it is extended by six months.

Any action brought against a governmental entity must be presented to the entity in writing within two years after the cause of action arose or two years from the date the cause of action was or should reasonably have been discovered. Actions against governmental entities must be commenced within one year after the claim is filed with the governmental entity, except a minor under seven years of age may bring an action within two years after the occurrence or until his eighth birthday, whichever period is longer.

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.

Additional Personal Injury Articles

Search LawInfo's Personal Injury Resources