Personal injury lawsuits: the clock is running

On Behalf of | May 17, 2022 | Personal Injury |

When you’re injured in a car accident, it’s not always easy to know what you should do next or when you should do it. In addition to the pain you suffer, there can be anxiety from the financial difficulties your injury creates. But as hard as it can be to take decisive action, sometimes that’s exactly what you need to do.

There is a legal time limit

The driver who caused your accident had a legal duty to drive their vehicle safely and with a reasonable degree of care. When they failed to do so, they became legally negligent. In these circumstances, New Jersey gives you the right to file a personal injury lawsuit. There’s nothing frivolous about such a lawsuit – it is the means by which the law allows you to be made whole again.

However, at the same time New Jersey give you the right to sue, it also places a time limit upon that right. Known as the statute of limitations, you generally have only two years from the date of the accident to file your lawsuit. If you fail to begin the process early enough, you lose the right forever.

There’s also a practical time limit

Beyond the statute of limitations, there are also practical considerations at play. The success of your lawsuit depends upon the strength of the evidence available to you. Unfortunately, evidence is not automatically preserved for all time. Instead, it must be collected – and the sooner, the better.

Required documents must be gathered and witnesses must be interviewed. This is the investigation process and it does not happen overnight. The more time which passes, the more likely that evidence grows stale, weakening your case and decreasing the chances you will be able to hold the negligent party accountable for their actions.