There is no mandated statute of limitations for a claim. However, there is a statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit for a slip and fall accident, which is generally two years under California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) §335.1. This California state law applies to most negligence cases. This includes premises liability accidents, such as slip and fall injuries.
In some cases, you can obtain an out-of-court settlement in this type of case. Other slip and fall cases end with a settlement agreement between the victim and their attorney and the property owner and their insurer.
Understanding the Statute of Limitations
A civil statute of limitations is a law that creates a specific timeline for a legal case. If the injured victim does not file the initial paperwork to begin the case before the deadline set by the law, the trial court may bar the case from moving forward. In turn, the statute of limitations is essentially an expiration date for the case. There are statutes of limitations on criminal cases as well as civil cases, including personal injury cases, such as slip and falls.
Even though the general deadline for initiating a personal injury case is two years from the date the injuries occurred, there can be exceptions to this rule. Your attorney can assess the facts of your case to help you determine the deadline for taking civil action in court, in the event it becomes necessary.
Factors that Affect the Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations for a slip and fall claim in Los Angeles has specific rules that determine when it begins, how long it runs, and what happens when the defendant is not an individual or a business.
The defendant’s identity plays a role in altering the statute of limitations in some cases. For example, if your fall occurred on government property, you only have six months to file an administrative claim with the agency. This is a necessary step before you can file a lawsuit in this type of case. Failure to meet this deadline could mean you lose the right to go to court, even if two years have not passed.
Other factors that might affect how long you have to file paperwork and go to court include:
- The age of the victim
- When the victim discovered their injuries
- The time it takes to identify the property owner or liable party
- Other factors unique to your case
Because different variables can affect the necessary timeline in a slip and fall case in Los Angeles, it may be helpful having an attorney review your case and determine if any exceptions to the two-year statute of limitations apply before moving forward with your insurance claim. This can help ensure you understand your rights and the role of this law in your case.
Premises Liability Law in California
Per California Civil Code (CIV) §1714, property owners in California owe customers, visitors, and others who are legally on their property a certain duty of care. If there is a hazard on the property that poses a known risk or a risk they should have been aware of, and this hazard causes an injury, the property owner may be accountable. Alternatively, a lessee or another property occupier may be responsible in some cases.
If you have been hurt in a slip and fall in Los Angeles, you should not have to pay for your related medical treatment or cover your missed wages out of your own pocket. The negligent property owner should be responsible for their carelessness, not you. To this end, you may be able to pursue an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit to recover a financial award for your losses.
Talk to a Member of Our Team Today
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our Los Angeles team helps premises liability accident victims seek financial awards for their injuries and related expenses. We do not shy away from even the toughest cases. If you qualify for compensation, we will represent you based on a contingency fee. You will pay us nothing upfront for our representation. We take our fee from the settlement or award we recover in your case, never from your bank account.
You can learn more today by calling our office to discuss your accident with a member of our team for free. Dial (800) 223-5115 now to get started.