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What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Car Accident in Washington, DC?

When you get into a car accident in Washington, DC, you must file a car accident claim three years from the collision date. However, there are exceptions to the statute of limitations, which can complicate the filing process. If you are unsure of filing deadlines and time limits for a personal injury lawsuit, Regan Zambri Long can guide you through the process.

If you or a loved one were involved in a car accident in Washington, DC, contact the top-rated car accident attorneys at  Regan Zambri Long to schedule a free consultation and learn about your legal options against the at-fault driver.

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What Is the DC Statute of Limitations?

A statute of limitations is a law that bars claims after a set amount of time has passed from the accident or event. The clock on the statute of limitations begins at the time of the accident or the discovery of an injury related to the incident.What is The Statute of Limitations for a Car Accident in Washington, DC?

Because not all injuries will be apparent immediately, knowing what time limitations are in place in your region to ensure you can file a personal injury claim is essential.

What happens if I do not file a car accident lawsuit within three years?

Unfortunately for accident victims, if you do not file your car accident lawsuit within three years, you cannot file a claim. Missing deadlines can happen for various reasons, including the insurance company not holding up their end of a settlement agreement in a timely fashion, leaving you little time to file a lawsuit.

If you have concerns about missing a filing deadline, a personal injury attorney from Regan Zambri Long can help.

Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations in Washington, DC

Though the rules surrounding the three-year statute of limitations are seemingly straightforward, there are exceptions to the law, giving injury victims extended filing times in some cases to make claims.

However, these exceptions can make car accident cases more complex, making the need for legal advice more necessary.

Does the discovery rule apply?

In some accident claims, the lawsuit filing time does not begin until an injury or loss is discovered. This is known as the discovery rule. Discovery is commonly used in medical malpractice claims but could apply to a car accident lawsuit.

A personal injury lawyer can tell you when the statute of limitations expires in your specific claim and if the discovery rule applies.

Is a minor involved?

Another exception is the involvement of a minor. If a minor is involved in a car accident and sustains serious injuries, the time limitations do not begin until three years after the victim’s 18th birthday.

However, if a parent or guardian files a claim on behalf of the minor victim, the minor cannot open another lawsuit against the at-fault party when they are of age.

If you have concerns about when it is appropriate to file a lawsuit for your injured child, schedule a free consultation with Regan Zambri Long.

Claims Against Government Entities

Sometimes, a car accident may involve a government entity or government employee. These types of lawsuits can also create exceptions to filing deadlines.

Because the District of Columbia and the federal government have waived their right to sovereign immunity in personal injury claims, a government agency or employee can be sued for damages.

However, the timeline to do so is much shorter, with the government requiring notice within six months of the accident’s occurrence. Legal proceedings involving the government also have nuances that may differ from suing a private citizen. A District of Columbia personal injury attorney can guide you through the process.

What about fatal car accidents?

Suppose a car accident results in the wrongful death of a car accident injury victim. In that case, the deceased’s personal representatives have two years from the death to file a lawsuit against the responsible party.

However, only certain people can file a wrongful death claim. These include certain family members or the deceased’s representative or executor of the estate.

Statute of Limitations on Hit-and-Run Car Accidents in DC

Despite the complexities of hit-and-run accidents, victims still only have three years from the collision to file a lawsuit. Hit-and-run cases can be complicated and take even more time to file an insurance claim or a lawsuit.

The law firm of Regan Zambri Long can help you procure financial compensation for your hit-and-run wreck.

When do I need a car accident attorney for a motor vehicle wreck?

You never have to hire a lawyer to take legal action, especially if it is clear your own insurance company will be handling your losses.

However, establishing an attorney-client relationship can benefit your claim when the car crash report contains discrepancies or your car insurance does not cover your medical expenses and property damage.

Deadlines You Can’t Afford to Miss in a DC Car Accident

The statute of limitations may be three years from your accident date, but there are other deadlines you don’t want to miss when you’ve been hurt.

Seek medical attention

You should seek medical treatment as soon as possible after your accident. If you’ve been hurt, get treatment from emergency personnel. If you have no apparent injuries, be sure to get evaluated by a physician and document any care given. If you have injuries that appear later on, this information will be critical when you seek compensation for your medical bills.

Report your accident to your insurance

Washington, DC, is a no-fault state regarding accidents, which means you seek compensation from your insurance. However, you must notify your insurance company immediately to notify them of the wreck.

In DC, you have 60 days to notify your insurance company and the other drivers. Notifying them is not the same as filing a claim; this action begins the claims process.

Contact a DC Personal Injury Attorney at Regan Zambri Long

If you or a loved one were involved in a car accident in Washington, DC, and now seek legal representation, call Regan Zambri Long. Our top-rated car accident lawyers can help  you secure compensation for your economic and noneconomic losses, including medical treatment, including future medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.

For a no-obligation, free consultation, call the DC car accident lawyers of Regan Zambri Long today.

Schedule a Free Consultation

Have you or your loved one sustained injuries in Washington DC, Maryland or Virginia? Regan Zambri Long PLLC has the best lawyers in the country to analyze your case and answer the questions you may have.

Call 202-960-4596

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