The statute of limitations imposes a very strict two-year time limit for an injured person to initiate their proceedings. If your proceedings are not brought within the two year time limit then your entitlement to bring a claim is extinguished.
The time limit is two years, however, given the amount of investigation that is required to bring a personal injury action this can in fact be a relatively short period of time and therefore, all Claimants should act without delay.
There are a number of limited exceptions to the two-year time limit and they are as follows:
- A child has two years from their 18th birthday to bring their claim.
- Where a person is of unsound mind, proven by a doctor then the statute of limitations will not run against that person.
- Date of knowledge, this exception operates to assist those Claimants who were not aware of the injury suffered by them until a later date. For example, if a Claimant underwent an operation and the surgeon negligently cause irreparable harm to the Plaintiff, however, that harm did not manifest itself until three years after the operation then that Claimant would not be statute barred, i.e. because two years has passed, in fact the two-year time limit will only start running from the date that they become aware of the injury caused to them.
The date of knowledge exception to the statute of limitations is an extremely tricky one and once you do become aware of the injury suffered by you, you should seek legal advice straight away.
*In contentious business a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.
**This information is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal or professional advice. Professional or legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this publication. No liability is accepted by McElhinney & Associates for any action taken in reliance on the information contained herein. Any and all information is subject to change.