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Statute of Limitations on Personal Injury Claims

Adams Cross, LLC Dec. 29, 2023

Imagine you've been injured and it wasn't your fault. You're hurting, medical bills are piling up, and you're losing wages because you can't work. You know you need to take legal action, but there's a lot on your plate and time just slips by. Then, before you know it, the deadline to file a personal injury claim has passed.

That's called exceeding the statute of limitations, and it can mean you've lost your chance to seek compensation.

It's a tough spot to be in, and that's why it's so important to understand what the statute of limitations is and how it works. 

Understanding the Statute of Limitations

In the legal field, we often toss around the term "statute of limitations." But what does it really mean? Simply put, it's a deadline. In Kansas, if you've been injured due to someone else's negligence, you generally have two years from the date of the injury to file a personal injury claim. This timeline is crucial for us to initiate legal action on your behalf. If you miss this deadline, your claim could be barred, and you might lose the opportunity to seek compensation for your injuries

That being said, Kansas law does provide certain exceptions and variations to the general two-year rule.

For example, if you were a minor when you sustained the injury, the clock on the statute of limitations might not start ticking until you reach the age of majority. Similarly, if the injury wasn't immediately apparent or discoverable, the countdown might begin from the date you discovered the injury, rather than the actual date of the incident. 

Why Does The Statute of Limitations Exist?

The statute of limitations plays a vital role in maintaining the integrity, efficiency, and fairness of the legal system. To start with, evidence, be it physical or eyewitness testimony, can degrade or become less reliable over time. The statute of limitations encourages prompt action, ensuring that cases are tried based on the most reliable and fresh evidence. Without such a limit, legal actions could be brought up too long after the event, when evidence may be lost or witnesses could have forgotten the details of the incident. 

Additionally, the statute of limitations provides potential defendants with a sense of security. It would be unfair to have an indefinite threat of litigation long after the events in question have taken place. This legal structure, thus, brings a certain level of predictability and stability to potential civil disputes. 

Finally, it promotes efficiency in the legal system by discouraging procrastination and encouraging people to pursue their legal remedies promptly. It helps keep the court's docket clear of stale cases, enabling it to better handle current issues. So, while it may seem like an obstacle in some instances, the statute of limitations is a necessary and beneficial component of our legal system. 

What if You Miss the Deadline?

So, what happens if you've missed the two-year deadline? It's not the end of the road. We understand that life can get complicated and sometimes, things slip through the cracks. That's why it's important to consult with us as soon as you realize you've missed the deadline. While it can certainly make things more challenging, there might still be exceptions or alternative legal avenues available for you. 

Our experienced attorneys will carefully assess the specific circumstances of your case to determine whether any exceptions apply. We'll guide you through the process of filing a claim, even if it's late, and help you understand your options for seeking compensation. The key is not to delay—the sooner you get in touch with us, the better chance we have of exploring potential solutions and safeguarding your rights. 

How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

You might be wondering, how can an attorney help in a situation like this? Truthfully, a personal injury lawyer can be invaluable—the difference between a fair settlement and further pain and suffering. Here's a few examples of how an attorney can help:

  • Deep understanding of Kansas personal injury laws. This includes the intricacies of the statute of limitations. An attorney will make sure all necessary deadlines are met so you don't have to worry about the technicalities. 

  • Investigation and evidence gathering. We'll conduct a thorough investigation into your case, collecting all the evidence needed to support your claim. This might include witness statements, medical records, accident reports, and any other relevant documentation. 

  • Skilled negotiators. If your case doesn't go to trial and can be settled out of court, your lawyer will advocate for your best interests during settlement discussions, aiming to secure a fair and just compensation amount for your injuries and losses. 

  • Strong trial representation (if necessary). Most personal injury cases get settled outside of court. But if your case does go to trial, an experienced injury lawyer will present your case effectively, cross-examine witnesses, and argue on your behalf to maximize your chances of a favorable outcome. 

In essence, hiring us to handle your personal injury claim within the statute of limitations can significantly increase your chances of success. We'll guide you through the legal process, protect your rights, and work tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve.

Adams Cross, LLC proudly serves clients throughout Olathe, Kansas, and the surrounding areas of Johnson County, Lawrence, Wyandotte County, and the Kansas City metro area.  

We've spent over 25 years helping folks just like you. We're committed to protecting your rights and helping you get the compensation you deserve. Whether you're dealing with injuries from a car accident, a slip and fall, or medical malpractice, we're here to help. Don't worry about figuring out the legal system on your own—let us handle that for you.