When you’ve been seriously hurt in a car accident, settling your insurance claim is probably the last thing on your mind — but the insurance company’s adjuster keeps calling. Do you have to act immediately, even if you aren’t sure how well you’re going to recover or how long you may be off work?
No, you don’t.
Insurance companies sometimes try to pressure people into settling their motor vehicle accident claims right away, before they really have a grip on the true consequences of their injuries. You don’t have to rush, however, because the law gives you some time.
How long do you have to file an injury claim after a car wreck?
Every state has a law known as the “statute of limitations,” which defines how long you can wait to file your personal injury claim. If you wait too long and exceed that time limit, you’re forever barred from making your claim in court.
In Ohio, the statute of limitations following a motor vehicle accident is two years. With few exceptions, the clock on your statute of limitations will start ticking when the wreck occurs.
Are delays with the statute of limitations ever allowed?
Statutes of limitations are strictly enforced. Even being a day or two late with your filing is likely to be disastrous. Once the clock on a case starts ticking, it seldom pauses, or “tolls,” for any reason. While you don’t want to file a claim before you fully understand the extent of your losses, you also don’t want to wait until the last moment, either.
That being said, current safety precautions have obliged the courts to operate on reduced hours and take other measures that may cause filing delays. As a result, the Ohio Supreme Court has tolled the statutes of limitation and deadlines on civil and criminal cases alike until July 30, 2020, or the expiration of Executive Order 2020-01D, whichever comes first.
If you were seriously injured in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligent or reckless driving, take the necessary steps to protect your legal interests and your future before the statute of limitations expires. An experienced advocate can help you obtain the compensation you deserve.