Florida Car Accident Statute of Limitations

How Long Do I Have A Claim?

Being involved in a car accident is one of the most unfortunate occurrences. Oftentimes, accidents result in physical injuries, vehicle repairs, medical expenses, and legal expenses.

Fortunately, the state of Florida allows recovery for certain personal injury claims – however, only if the claim is brought to the attention of the court within a specific amount of time. In legal terms, the amount of time allotted for a cause of action to be brought in a court of law after the injury is incurred or discovered is called the statute of limitations. So, what is the statute of limitations on claims arising from car accidents in Florida? Here is what is important to know.

What does the Statute say in Florida?

What does the Floridian law say about the statute of limitation on car accidents? To cite the statute verbatim, Chapter 95 Section 95.11(3)(a) of the Florida Statutes Annotated states in relevant part:

Actions other than for recovery of real property shall be commenced as follows:

(3) WITHIN FOUR YEARS.— (a)An action founded on negligence.”

In other words, the statute makes it clear that one has four (4) years after the date of the car accident to file a cause of action in a Floridian civil court of law. The Section 95.11(3) carves out an exception to the statute in the event the accident resulted in the death of a person. In the event of a death, the statute of limitations to bring a cause of action is reduced to two (2) years.

How to File a Proper Claim?

In order to not surpass the statute of limitations, it is important to file a properly plead claim in the proper county and court as soon as possible. Legal proceedings are not quick, and instead are often timely.

Many make the mistake of not considering the statute of limitations and do not realize that once the statue runs, there will be a complete bar of any claims arising from the accident.  In order to ensure that a claim is not thrown out of the court, hiring an attorney that is experienced in personal injury, to properly litigate the claim, is essential. An experienced attorney in Florida will be familiar with the statute of limitations and all other aspects of bringing a personal injury claim in the state’s court.

The state of Florida has many other legal obstacles that other states do not have. For example, Florida’s Personal Injury Protection law (PIP) has specific requirements when making a personal injury claim. An attorney experienced in the field will be knowledgeable on how to navigate the claim through the statute of limitations, PIP laws, and any other legal procedure.