Author Photo
Written by: Steven R. Clawson
| Read Time: 3 minutes

The statute of limitations for California car accidents puts injury accident victims on a tight timeline. In most cases, you have only two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit in civil court. If you fail to act within this period, you could lose your legal right to recover compensation for your damages.

If you suffered serious injuries in a car accident that someone else caused, talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer. You could be entitled to compensation for your physical, emotional, and financial damages.

Time is of the essence, however, to help ensure you get the maximum compensation possible. Contact the experienced California car accident lawyers at Wells Call today for help.

How Long Do I Have to File a Claim for a California Car Accident?

The California statute of limitations for car accident injuries requires that victims take legal action within two years of a motor vehicle collision or any other type of personal injury accident. If you attempt to file suit after this period expires, the court will likely refuse to hear your case.

If the accident victim ultimately succumbs to their injuries, surviving family members typically have two years from the date of the victim’s death to file a wrongful death claim.

California car accident victims should consult an experienced attorney to determine how long they have to take legal action. This helps protect your legal rights and preserve your right to recover compensation.

Exceptions to the California Statute of Limitations for Car Accidents

Some exceptions to the California car accident statute of limitations do exist. These exceptions could affect the period within which you must take legal action.

For instance, if a government entity or employee caused your accident, you have even less time to pursue your case. You must notify the governmental entity of your intent to sue within six months of the accident.

The entity then has 45 days to respond to your claim. If the entity denies your claim or fails to respond, you may proceed with your lawsuit.

Examples of car accidents that could involve the government include being hit by a city bus or municipal transit vehicle or having a car accident due to inadequate maintenance on city, county, or state roadway.

Other exceptions involve young drivers and delayed injuries. Injury accident victims under the age of 18 have two years from their 18th birthday to file a legal claim.

You might also have more time to file a lawsuit if you did not discover your injuries immediately. In that case, you have two years from the date your injury became apparent or should have become apparent.

California car accident lawyers encourage victims never to assume they have plenty of time to pursue a claim. The sooner you can begin the legal process, the better the outcome of your case could be.

Contact a California Car Accident Lawyer As Soon As Possible

If you or a loved one sustained injuries due to someone else’s wrongful actions, contact Wells Call as soon as possible. To build a strong case, we need access to the accident scene at the earliest possible moment.

If access is delayed, evidence may be lost or destroyed. Witnesses may not remember the details of the collision as clearly if days, weeks, or even months have passed.

The sooner we start working on your case, the sooner we can negotiate a settlement for your damages and get a check in your hands.

We have convenient office locations throughout California, including Napa, Vallejo, Vacaville, Woodland, and Fairfield. We can also come to your location or consult with you by phone or video conference, for your comfort, safety, and convenience.

Call us now at (707) 243-8595 or contact us online to talk to one of our knowledgeable attorneys, and to learn more about the California auto accident statute of limitations and how it might affect your case.

    • Free Case Review *Required Fields
    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.