How Long After a Car Accident Can I Claim Injury in NY?
Car accidents result in many losses for the victims involved. Any serious injuries sustained cost a lot of money to treat, and you may not be able to return to work right away. The damages to your vehicle may be extensive, and are also costly to repair. In addition to these losses, the emotional impact of a crash can also be extensive and may remain with you for years to come.
You can file a claim to recover financial compensation for these losses, but you only have a limited time to do so. The statute of limitations, or time limit, you have to file your claim is only three years from the date of the accident. If the statute of limitations expires, you will likely forfeit your right to claim any compensation.
Deadlines to Remember After a Car Accident
Three years may seem like a long time after a car accident, but there are other deadlines you should keep in mind that are much shorter. Not all of the following will apply to all car accident cases, but it is important to keep these deadlines in mind.
- If the value of damages exceed $1,000, you must report the crash to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within ten days after the collision. You can report the accident using the MV-104 form.
- To claim no-fault benefits through your insurance company, you must file a claim with the insurer within 30 days of the accident.
- If the accident left you with a disability, you must file a disability claim within 30 days after the collision.
- In some cases, such as when the negligent party was a government entity, you must file a “notice of claim” in the 90 days following the crash.
- If you suffered a serious injury and the negligent party did not carry the proper insurance, you have 90 days from the accident to file a claim with the Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation (MVAIC).
Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations
While the statute of limitations is only three years from the date of the accident, there are some exceptions allowed under the law. Although these are usually limited, they can either shorten or lengthen the amount of time you have to file your claim. The exceptions to the statute of limitations are as follows:
- Claims against government entities: If you are filing a claim against a government entity, you must file a notice of claim within 90 days of the crash. This notice is to notify the government institution of an impending claim, to value the merits of the claim, and to conduct an investigation while certain records, eyewitness statements, and other evidence is still available. A lawsuit must be started within 1 year and 90 days of the crash.
- Claims involving injured minors: When someone under the age of 18 is injured in a car wreck, the statute of limitations can be extended for a significant period of time. Parents can file a claim on the child’s behalf, but the minor will have until three years after their 18th birthday to file a claim on their own.
- Accident victims with a mental illness: In the event that an accident victim has a mental illness that renders them unable to file a claim, the statute of limitations can be extended. A mental health professional will have to declare the victim mentally incapable of filing a claim. After treatment, a mental health professional must declare that the victim now has the mental capacity to file a claim.
The Importance of Filing a Lawsuit Quickly
Again, if you file a claim once the statute of limitations has passed, the insurance companies and the court will likely throw out your claim and you will not receive any compensation for your losses. The same is also true if you miss any of the important deadlines. However, while it is important to file a claim before the statute of limitations expires, there are other reasons you want to file as soon as possible.
Over time, important evidence will disappear and the memories of eyewitnesses may fade. You will also be able to remember what happened, and other important details, if you get started on your claim right away rather than waiting a year or so. Although you may not want to file a claim while you are trying to recover from serious injuries, a New York City car accident lawyer will handle every aspect of it so you claim the full damages you deserve.
The Statute of Limitations on Wrongful Death Claims
Car accidents are one of the leading causes of fatalities in New York. In fact, approximately three people die every day in car crashes throughout the state. It is very difficult to lose a loved one caused by someone else’s negligence on the roads, but if you want to file a wrongful death claim, you must do so even more quickly.
Wrongful death claims are governed by a different statute of limitations in the state, and you have only two years from the date of the death to file a claim. It is important to remember that the date used in these claims is the date of death, not the date of the accident. So, if your loved one was in a crash and survived for some time before passing away, you must file your claim within two years of the date they passed. Again, if the statute of limitations expires, you will likely forfeit your right to claim any damages at all.
Call Our Car Accident Lawyer in NYC for a Free Consultation Today
If you or someone you love has been injured in a crash, our NYC car accident lawyer at Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, P.C. can help. Our skilled attorney will ensure your claim is filed on time and help you claim the full damages you deserve. Call us today at 1-877-ASK4SAM or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.