The statute of limitations to file a lawsuit after a car accident in the state of Missouri is longer than many other states while the state of Kansas has a much shorter statute of limitations deadline. In any case, if you had a car accident years ago, it still may not be too late to file a claim for any damages or injuries you may have suffered. There are important deadlines you need to know in order to determine whether you can still pursue your claim for injuries.
What is a Statute of Limitations?
A statute of limitations is the deadline by which a person must file a claim in a court of law or lose the right to do so forever. Statute of limitations deadlines are established so that people cannot file a claim decades after an accident or incident occurred. Evidence and memories are often lost during the period of waiting to file a claim, and therefore each state makes a determination regarding how long a person will have to file a personal injury claim for their injuries due to someone else’s negligence.
Missouri and Kansas Statute of Limitations
There are two different statute of limitations, or filing deadlines, in the state of Missouri and Kansas that relate to car accidents and other injury cases.
- Car Accidents Involving Injuries or Property Damage: The Missouri statute of limitations deadline to bring a claim regarding injuries or damages suffered from a car accident is five years. While this may seem like a long time, it allows time for anyone involved in an accident to recover fully from his or her injuries and make an accurate determination of how much compensation is owed for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damages. The Kansas statute of limitations involving injuries suffered from car accidents is only two (2) years.
- Other Types of Accidents that result in Injuries or Damages: Just as in car accident cases, other injuries such as slip and fall, premises liability cases where you are injured in a place of business, motorcycle accidents, boating accidents, products liability, dog bites, birth injury, brain injury, spinal cord injuries, burn injuries also have a 5-year Statute of Limitation in Missouri and a 2-year Statute of Limitation in Kansas.
- Car Accidents Involving Death: If a catastrophic car accident happens and causes the death of someone due to the negligence of another driver, there may be a strong case for a wrongful death claim. In the cases of wrongful death, the statute of limitations is lowered to three years instead of five years. This statute of limitations will apply to anyone involved in an accident including a driver, passenger, bicyclist, motorcyclist, or even a pedestrian. The three-year deadline starts the day the victim died, which may be a different date than the original car accident. Again, the Kansas statute of limitations for a wrongful death suffered from car accidents is only two (2) years.
When to File Your Personal Injury or Wrongful Death Case
It is difficult to determine the exact time you should file a personal injury or wrongful death case after a car accident. If someone has died, there is no additional waiting that needs to occur to determine if an injury will worsen or if additional therapies or medical care will be needed. However, wrongful death claims may need to have independent investigations and consultations with expert witnesses. For those claims that involve personal injuries, oftentimes it is critical to wait until all medical therapies have been completed and the victim is no longer in pain to ensure that he or she is compensated accurately for their medical bills, lost wages, therapy, or pain and suffering. Visiting with an experienced personal injury or wrongful death attorney can help you determine when the best time to file your case would be based on the unique facts and circumstances.
Contact an Experienced Attorney
Contact our experienced personal injury attorneys at Griggs Injury Law at (816) 474-0202 to help you build a strong personal injury case and ensure that you do not miss any deadlines after a car accident. Call us today for your free consultation.