You have two years to file a case in Illinois for personal injuries sustained in a boating accident. However, different types of cases have different time limits so it’s important to figure out exactly what your window is.
So When Must I Bring A Case For Boat Accident Injuries?
The answer to how long you have to file an Illinois boating lawsuit depends on the basis of your case. If you are suing for personal injury, then you generally have two years from when the cause of action arose (typically, this means when you were injured). However, that clock does not start running until you discover or reasonably should have discovered that you were injured in the first place. See 735 ILCS 5/13-202. If you are suing for products liability, the limit is two years if you are suing for injuries and five years if you are suing for property damage. As in personal injury cases, the clock in products liability lawsuits does not start until discovery but in no case can it be brought 10 years after when the plaintiff received the item or 12 years after the first sale of the item. See 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/13-202 (2010) and 735 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/13-205 (2010).
Why Does Illinois Have Limits On Boat Accident Cases?
Illinois is not the only state that uses statutes of limitations to bar plaintiffs from bringing tardy cases. Nearly every other state has also adopted similar provisions to ensure that you bring your suit for injuries within a prescribed window. Why do they do this? First of all, they don’t want you to dally. They prefer disputes to be brought and settled rather than linger and delayed. Also, it costs more money to hear older suits. Finally, it’s actually harder for parties to try older suits. For all these reasons and many more, Illinois uses statutes of limitations to make sure that you bring in your boat accident claims to court on time.
What’s The Penalty For Filing Boat Accident Cases Late?
Here’s what is so important about statutes of limitations: if you don’t follow them, you can be locked out of court. Of course, there are exceptions but the general rule holds that if your case is untimely then a defendant can get it tossed from the courthouse. This raises another important point: the defendant has to raise the objection. Statutes of limitations do not automatically remove your suit from court. The opposing party must move and show that you didn’t bring it within the correct amount of time. However, why would you take this risk? You can make sure to take this tool out of the defendant’s arsenal by filing quickly. This will help you for other reasons too so there’s no use in waiting.
Worried Your Boat Accident Lawsuit Might Be Too Late?
The Illinois laws regarding statutes of limitations and when you must file your boat accident claims are dense and confusing. With our help though, you can be sure that your case will filed on time. Also, we can guarantee that you will receive 100% dedicated representation at no cost until you are satisfied with the award or settlement. Just call our offices today to learn more and someone from the Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers will begin your case immediately.
If you would like to know more about boat accidents in Illinois, please read the following articles: