Preliminary Note: Statutes of limitations restrict the time period that a person can file a lawsuit. These statutes not only vary by state, but they also vary by cause of action. The following guide provides limitations periods for each state, but only for particular causes of action; specifically, those related to personal injury, medical malpractice, and products liability claims. The sections discussing special rules for minors only apply to the causes of action listed for that particular state.
A wrongful death action based on a negligence must be filed within three years of the date of death. In cases where the claim arose from an intentional tort, such as assault and battery, suit must be filed within one year of the date of death.
Personal injury actions must be brought within three years of the date when the injury occurred.
Actions against health care providers must be filed within two years of the date that the act giving rise to the injury occurred, or within two years of the date when the injury was, or should have been, discovered. The seven-year repose period does not apply to foreign object suits or fraudulently concealed malpractice. In no event can a person file a medical malpractice action more than seven years from the date that the negligent act or omission occurred. These time limits apply to minors six and older. In the case of minors under six years of age, medical malpractice actions must be filed within two years of the date of the child's sixth birthday. Mississippi also requires all persons who intend to file a medical malpractice action to give a 60-day written notice of action to the defendant.
Products liability actions must be brought within three years after the plaintiff suffers the injury.
Except in cases of medical malpractice or wrongful death, the statute of limitations begins to run on the minor's 21st birthday.
Need more information on state laws? Learn more about the laws where you live.