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What's the time limit for an injury claim after a car accident?

When a person is injured in a motor vehicle accident caused by a negligent driver in Mississippi, they have the right to sue that driver and recover monetary damages. The damages that can be recovered include compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering. But an accident victim can't wait too long to protect their rights.

Every state has time limits, known as statutes of limitation, within which different types of lawsuits must be commenced. In Mississippi, a lawsuit for personal injuries arising out of a car accident must be commenced within three years of the date of the accident. If the victim fails to file a lawsuit within that time, they can lose their right to do so. A lawsuit filed after the statute of limitations has expired will usually be thrown out of court.

There are some exceptions to the three-year limit. If the victim was a minor, or suffered from a mental disability at the time of the accident, the three years does not begin to run until they reach the age of majority or recover from the mental disability.

Three years may seem like a long time but it really isn't. Preparing a lawsuit takes time, and it is essential to interview witnesses and conduct an accident investigation while memories are fresh and before critical evidence disappears or is lost. If an accident victim is thinking of bringing an injury claim, it is best to consult an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon after the accident as possible.

Source: Miss. Code Ann. ยงยง 15-1-49, 15-1-59, accessed May 6, 2015

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