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When You Must File a Personal Injury Action in New Jersey

Airbag exploded at a car accidentIn the aftermath of an accident, when you have suffered serious injury because of the carelessness or negligence of another person, you focus needs to be on your physical recovery. But you must also pay attention to your legal rights. In fact, there are laws, known as statutes of limitations, which require that you seek legal recourse for a personal injury within a specific period of time. There are many good reasons for these laws—they help ensure that evidence is not lost and that witnesses’ memories don’t fade. They also ensure that the wrongdoer doesn’t have to live indefinitely with the fear of a potential lawsuit.

Every state has its own statute of limitations, and the period of time in which a lawsuit must be filed may also vary based on the type of dispute. Under New Jersey law, a claim based on personal injury must be filed within “two years after the cause of any such action shall have accrued.” The same time period applies regardless of the nature or extent of the injury, and applies to wrongful death claims, though a wrongful death claim must be filed within two years of the date of death.

It’s not uncommon, though, for injuries to take months or years to surface. For example, you may contract cancer because of exposure to toxic substances at work, or you may suffer injuries to your neck or lower back that don’t immediately manifest. Fortunately, New Jersey has adopted the “discovery rule” governing the running of the statute of limitations in personal injury cases. This rule holds that the time period for filing a personal injury claim does not start to move until you either have discovered or, through the exercise of reasonable care, should have discovered the injury or illness.

Contact Attorney Howard D. Popper

To learn your options when you have suffered a personal injury, contact our office online or call attorney Popper at 973-993-8787. We have offices in Morristown and Newton, but will come to your home or the hospital, if necessary. There is no charge for your first consultation.

We handle all personal injury claims on a contingency basis. You won’t be charged any legal fees unless attorney Popper recovers compensation for your losses.