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Is there a time limit for personal injury claims?

Many people are unaware of the time limits involved in making a personal injury claim. Here's what you need to know.

Victoria Price

by Victoria Price

calendar_month 23 Apr 23

schedule 4 min read

If you have suffered an injury due to an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering, loss of earnings and medical expenses. However, many people are unaware of the time limits involved in making a personal injury claim. In this article, we will explain how long after the accident you can claim and what you need to know about the claims process.

Time limits: How long after the accident can you make a personal injury claim?

In the UK, there are time limits for making a personal injury claim. These time limits are known as the “limitation period”, and they vary depending on the circumstances of the injury. Generally, you have three years from the date of the injury to make a claim. This timescale applies to adults who have the capacity to bring a claim.

Can I make a personal injury claim after three years?

If the injury occurred to a child who is under the age of 18, the time limit finishes three years after the child’s 18th birthday. If the injured person has lost mental capacity, the time limit does not apply unless the person regains their capacity. If they do, then the time limit starts to run and it will be three years from that date.

It’s important to note that if you miss the deadline for bringing a claim, the defendant may have an immediate defence and the claim may be struck out. The claimant would then need to persuade a judge that there is a good reason for the delay and that the case can still be pursued and defended as if it was inside the time limit. This is a high hurdle to get over and success is not guaranteed.

Why you shouldn’t wait to make a claim

If you have suffered an injury in the past, you may be hesitant to make a claim because you have since recovered, or you may have ‘put it behind you’. However, it’s important to remember that you can still make a claim as long as the injury occurred less than three years ago.

You might feel as though you have made a good recovery but can you be sure? It might be that your injury could get worse again in the future as you age or if your lifestyle changes. It also could be having an effect on another part of your body without you realising.  If you leave this to chance, your opportunity to claim could disappear.

Compensation can cover expenses such as medical treatment, rehabilitation and lost earnings. The claim can compensate you for money you have had to spend that you would not have done, otherwise.

Making a claim can also help prevent similar accidents from happening in the future by holding the responsible party accountable.

In particular, if you have suffered an injury during the Covid-19 lockdowns, you may have decided to wait to start a claim but still not done so.

There are many reasons why people don’t get round to starting a claim. We will not be concerned with the reasons, but we do urge you to pick up the phone or use our website here to make your enquiry. Take your first steps before you run out of time.

How we can help

At Price Slater Gawne, our specialist Serious and Personal Injury lawyers understand that making a claim can be daunting, especially for vulnerable people. We are here to help and assist and we have experience of handling all kinds of cases.

Our experienced personal injury lawyers can help you to make a claim and to get the compensation that you deserve. We operate on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis, so you will not have to pay anything upfront. We will only take a fee if we are successful in getting you compensation.

Contact us today to discuss your case.

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