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How long do I have to file a lawsuit or bring a claim for my injuries? What is the statute of limitations in New York?

Back to New York Personal Injury Questions

One important aspect of the law that every individual needs to be aware of is the applicable “statute of limitations.” This legal phrase means that a victim must file a claim or lawsuit within a specific time frame after an incident has occurred to avoid being barred from pursuing the claim.

To avoid jeopardizing your legal interests, you should seek legal advice to determine the specific statute of limitations applicable to your case. The New York Civil Practice Law and Rules Code under Article 2 does provide some of the applicable statute of limitations, but reading these rules cannot replace the advice of an experienced attorney. For example, personal injuries generally have a three-year statute of limitations, but this time frame is subject to some exceptions; exceptions that an experienced and knowledgeable attorney can advise you of, and assist you in determining if your case fallswithin one of these exceptions. For example, when a claim for recovery involves a municipality or a government agency, a notice of claim typically must be filed against the appropriate municipality or agency within a certain amount of time. In New York City, a filing usually must be made within 90 days of an incident. The statute of limitations for claims against a municipality or a government agency may be different from the statute of limitations for claims against a private party; see the New York General Municipal Code for further information.

Determining the applicable statute of limitations and knowing how and when to file a notice of claim requires the advice of a knowledgeable attorney. Our firm will consult with you to determine the deadline for filing your claim or lawsuit and we will act promptly to preserve the statute of limitations applicable to your case. We are ready to apply our skills to the facts of your case, by examining evidence and pursuing legal action to protect your rights and interests. We have the knowledge, expertise and advocacy skill necessary to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.

You may have a strong personal injury claim, but if you fail to act in a timely manner your claim may be barred by the statute of limitations or the failure to follow a procedural requirement. We serve the New York area, including Brooklyn, Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Long Island, Nassau, Yonkers and Westchester. Please contact our office by email or by phone in the Manhattan area at 212-889-9362 and in the Queens area at 718-777-5895 for a free consultation.

Video Transcription

A statute of limitations is the time limit you have to actually file a lawsuit, depending on the type of case. In New York State, a negligence case is three years. Now, negligence cases are car accidents, trip and fall cases, pretty much any type of injury case.

But there are exceptions to that rule. There are certain statutes of limitations that are much smaller. For instance, medical malpractice cases you only have 2 and 1/2 years. Or, if the case involves a municipality, like the City of New York, or a city bus, or a city train, or the subway, or something like that, in those cases you only have 90 days to file a notice of claim, and then only one year and 90 days from the date of the accident to actually start the lawsuit.

So you have to be careful about the statute of limitations. And the best thing to do is if you’re not sure how long you have, is call an attorney immediately.