What is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury in Nevada?
If you’ve suffered an injury or damage due to someone’s negligence then you need to get legal help as soon as you can before your case falls out of the statute of limitations for that state.
A personal injury due to an accident or someone’s negligence can change the victim’s life and cause both physical and mental trauma for years to come.
Each state has different laws related to the applicable period of time in which you can file your personal injury claim. You need to be aware of the statute of limitations in your state and you need a personal injury attorney to make your case.
What is a Statute of Limitations?
Each state has its own law, so it’s natural that they have its own statute of limitations. A statute of limitations is a set period of time in which a certain category of a claim or case can be filed to be considered valid. Personal injury accidents are considered civil lawsuits. While a court case comes under criminal law.
This also means that each kind of case will have its own rules regarding the statute of limitations. If we talk about Nevada, a murder case can be filed even 30 years after the murder was committed because there is no statute of limitation for murder in the state. However, other kinds of personal injuries have a set limit of time in which an accident lawyer can file a case.
Statute of Limitation on Personal Injury in Nevada:
Different kinds of personal injuries warrant different statutes of limitations and legal claims in the state of Nevada. In case of wrongful death due to someone’s negligence, the limit is two years. If an injury is caused due to someone’s negligence, that’s also a two-year statute limitation.
There are obviously some exceptions like if the injury is caused by a deceptive product, you will have a limit of 4 years to file a claim. On the other hand, a medical malpractice case has a shorter statute of limitations.
There are other factors at play here too. For example, if the defendant is a government entity, it can affect your claim and the statute of limitations, like shortening it down to 6 months. You also need to keep in mind that the kind of personal injury sustained also has an effect on the statute of limitations.
Most common claims can include – medical malpractice, product liability, slip and falls, wrongful death, car accidents, defamation, assault, and battery, and dog bites.
Why Should You File a Personal Injury Claim within the Statute of Limitations?
Did you get hurt due to someone’s negligence and ended up paying hefty medical bills? Suffered at your work and in your personal life? This is the sole reason for you to be quick about filing a case against the at-fault party that caused you so much pain and suffering. You deserve to be compensated for this loss. Your claim is only valid if it is filed within the time limit set by the State of Nevada aka the statute of limitations for personal injury claims.
Accidents and injuries that fall into the personal injury lawsuit category can include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Other kinds of brain injury
- Spinal cord injuries
- Crush injuries
- Facial lacerations
- Broken bones
All these injuries and effects are painful and have a direct impact on your ability to function normally in both personal and professional life and you deserve compensation for this pain and loss.
What is Shared Fault in Nevada Injury Cases?
It is quite obvious that if you or a loved one are injured as a result of an accident, you can place the entire blame of the situation on the other party. While you might also have an active role in sustaining said injuries.
If the state of Nevada finds a victim’s fault in an accident during the investigation, they can invoke special rules such as the modified comparative fault rule. This rule will help them reduce or eliminate the compensation the injured person was getting as a result of the personal injury claim due to a shared fault in the accident or event that caused the injury.
Let’s look at an example – let’s say you were hit by a car while you were walking against a green traffic light. Your medical bills and claim amount up to $10,000. In this case, let’s say your fault is about 40% and 60% was the driver’s fault.
Under the modified comparative fault rule, you will get a reduced compensation of $6,000 while $4,000 will be deducted against your fault in the event. If you are responsible for less than 50% of the damages, you will get reduced compensation in the state of Nevada. If your fault amounts to more than 50%, you get nothing as your damages will be dropped to zero automatically.
What is the Discovery Rule?
There are some cases where the victim may have a delayed onset of effects or injuries after an accident or event. The discovery rule is one of the few exceptions to the statute of limitations out there. According to this rule, the statute of limitations doesn’t come into effect till the time the injured party realizes they’re injured or have been affected.
The reason for delayed symptoms and discovery needs to be believable and logical. For example, this can be applicable to an old person that is being diagnosed with chemical poisoning as a result of working in a factory for years. In this case, the statute of limitations is active on the day of the diagnosis and root cause analysis.
This isn’t applicable in case of the more obvious events like a car crash or slip and falls where immediate injuries are more common.
Tolling of the Nevada Statute of Limitations
There can be specific cases where the statutory limits can be tolled. This means that under certain special circumstances, the time limit on certain personal injury claims can be stopped or extended in the state of Nevada.
For example, in the case of a minor, the statute of limitations isn’t applicable till the minor’s 18th birthday and even in cases where medical malpractice is involved, the limit is extended to 3 years.
Exceptions to the Two Year Statute of Limitations in Nevada:
As discussed before, each case and injury type has certain specific conditions for the statute of limitations. There are certain cases where the usual two-year mark isn’t applicable when filing a claim.
Let’s look at these in detail:
Medical malpractice cases have their own rules when it comes to filing a personal injury claim and the statute of limitations. According to the NRS 41A.097, the potential plaintiff must file a claim within three years of discovering the medical malpractice injuries or 1 year of discovering them or through the use of active diligence should have discovered.
If this three-year time limit has passed, the victim can no longer file a claim against the doctor even if it was a serious injury.
In the case of minor children, the statute of limitations does not come into effect until the minor reaches the age of 18. The parents are responsible for filing the claim and bringing attention to the damages unless it’s a case of brain damage or birth defects, in which case, the limitation periods can be extended till the child’s 10th birthday.
The state of Nevada actually puts damage caps in case of medical malpractice cases. This cap is finalized at $350,000 which is included in the “pain and suffering” category which comes under non-economic damages. This damage cap doesn’t affect economic damages like medical bills or lost wages. This cap also only holds true for cases that involve medical errors.
These claims need to be filed within 3 years of the injury or when the injury should have been reasonably found, whichever comes earlier.
Personal Injury Claims Against the Government:
So what if you were harmed due to the professional negligence of a Nevada government employee or agency? The two-year statute of limitation will still be applicable in this case. The procedure will change. Instead of filing your claim in the civil court, you will file it with the Office of the Attorney General first.
Get Help From McDonald Worley:
We are an award-winning legal firm that is dedicated to getting you the compensation you deserve for your injuries. We understand that an accident is not your fault and you shouldn’t suffer for it financially, physically, or mentally. We are known for our excellent attorney-client relationship practices.
Personal injuries as a result of accidents or someone’s negligence can cause great pain to the victim. It can mean mounting health care bills and loss of wages due to the inability to go to work.
Your personal injury lawyer will work tirelessly to get you compensation for personal and property damage and fight for you with the at-fault party and the insurance company.
Need legal advice or help to file your personal injury case in Nevada?
Contact us now.