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Back January 06, 2020

North Carolina Personal Injury Statutes of Limitation

If you have been involved in a car accident, pedestrian accident, bus accident, slip and fall accident, motorcycle accident, bicycle accident, boating accident, Jet Ski accident, work-related accident or you have been the victim of medical malpractice or you were injured on someone else’s property, it’s important to know a few things about the state’s legal time clock to pursue your injury claim. This information is beneficial whether or not you are dealing with an insurance settlement, a lawsuit or a Workers’ Compensation claim with the North Carolina Industrial Commission. 

Time Limits & Statutes of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims

3 Years for Most Personal Injury Cases

Every state in the United States has limits on the amount of time that a claimant has to file a lawsuit in court after the claimant received some type of injury. Different types of cases may have different deadlines that are generally known as statutes of limitations. In North Carolina, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases such as but not limited to those arising from motor vehicle accidents, bicycle accidents, boating accidents, Jet Ski accidents, pedestrian accidents, premises liability accidents, bus accidents, motorcycle accidents, injuries arising from assault and battery incidents and property damage matters is 3 years. That means that a claimant generally has 3 years from the date that an injury was incurred or the date that an injury causing incident occurred to file a civil action or lawsuit to seek relief and damages, such as but not limited to damages for compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, property damage, diminution in value, future medical costs and lost future earnings. Check out N.C.G.S. §1-52(16) for more information. 

It Depends for Medical Malpractice

Generally, in North Carolina, patients injured by medical malpractice must file a lawsuit within the longer of 3 years from the date of injury or within one year of when the injury should have been discovered, not to exceed four years from the injury-causing act. However, an exception is made for foreign objects left in an injured patient by a surgeon or their staff, in which case, an injured patient must file suit within one year of the discovery of the injury, but no later than 10 years from the date of the surgery. Check out N.C.G.S. § 1-15 for more information. 

Generally 2 Years for Workers’ Compensation Claims

Generally, the statute of limitations for Workers’ Compensation claims in North Carolina is 2 years. The 2-year time clock generally begins on the date the claimant is injured. Check out N.C.G.S. § 97-24 for more information. However, written notice should be provided to an injured party’s employer within 30 days of any injury-causing event that occurs while the injured party was acting in the employ of the employer. See N.C.G.S. § 97-22 for more information. 

Generally 2 Years for Wrongful Death Claims

Generally, the statute of limitations for Wrongful Death claims is 2 years after the deceased victim’s date of death. For more information see N.C.G.S. § 1-53(4)

Why Statutes of Limitation Matter

Statutes of Limitation matter regardless of whether an injured party intends to settle with an insurance company or file a lawsuit. Claimants should be mindful that if they fail to settle their case before the expiration of their applicable statute of limitations, insurance companies and at-fault parties will no longer be legally indebted to them. If a claimant gets close to running a statute of limitations, it is important that they file a lawsuit or initiate an applicable claim well before the statute of limitations accrues to prevent the expiration of their claim. 

Get Your Case Evaluated

We strongly encourage you to seek the advice of a licensed North Carolina Personal Injury Attorney if you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident, boating accident, Jet Ski accident, pedestrian accident, bicycle accident, slip and fall accident, premises liability accident, bus accident, work-related accident, medical malpractice accident or by any other means that was caused by another. You could potentially recover damages for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, property damage and other compensable damages and expenses. At Biazzo & Panchenko Law, we are prepared to negotiate a settlement for you or pursue your case through a jury verdict if warranted. Contact Biazzo & Panchenko Law today to schedule your free Personal Injury consultation. This blog is not to be construed as legal advice. 

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