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 must be filed within two years of the date of death.
These actions must be brought within two years of the date 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. If the injured person did not discover the injury, suit must be filed within two years of the date the injury was, or should have been discovered, but in no event more than six years after the date that the negligent act or omission occurred. These time limits apply to minors eight and older. A minor under eight years old must file suit within two years of the date the injury occurred or by his or her 10th birthday, whichever is later. The action may be brought outside the six-year period if the injury resulted from unintentionally leaving a foreign object in the body.
Generally, products liability actions must be brought within two years after the plaintiff suffers the injury, but there may be exceptions. Products liability actions must be brought within two years after the plaintiff suffers the injury and not more than 15 years after the delivery of the product unless the product is expressly warranted for a longer period. The 15-year period does not apply to discovery of a disease caused by a harmful material. For more information that may effect this general rule, please refer to Iowa statutory and case law.
Except in cases of medical malpractice or wrongful death, the statute of limitations is extended in favor of minors, so that they shall have one year from their 18th birthday to file suit.
Need more information on state laws? Learn more about the laws where you live.
Note: Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia. This information is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia, although if you are injured in an accident, we have relationships with other personal injury attorneys and lawyers throughout the United States.