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 three years of the date of death.
Personal injury actions must be brought within three years of the date of the injury or within three years of the time the plaintiff discovers, or in the exercise of reasonable diligence should have discovered the injury.
Actions against health care providers must be filed within three years of the date that the act giving rise to the injury occurred. This limitations period applies to minors who are eight and older. A minor under eight has until his or her 10th birthday to file a medical malpractice action.
In these cases, suit must be filed within three years of insertion of the foreign object or within three years of discovering the foreign object, whichever is earlier. This rule applies to minors.
Products liability actions must be brought within three years after the plaintiff suffers the injury or within three years of discovering the injury. In no event may a products liability action be brought more than 12 years after the product was manufactured and sold.
Except in cases of medical malpractice or wrongful death, minors have two years 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.