What Is The Time Limit For Personal Injury Claims?

It’s very important to be aware of the time limit for personal injury claims. Whilst there can be certain scenarios where exceptions to the time limit can apply, you should usually try to start a claim as soon as you can following your accident.

In this article, we’ll be addressing how long you have to claim for a personal injury. The time limit, as mentioned above, can vary in some situations. We’ll also break these down for you too. This way, they will be easier to understand.

If you have any questions on the time limit for personal injury claims in the UK or require elaboration on anything we have mentioned in this guide, please feel free to reach out to advisors. You can find the contact information you’ll need to do so at the top of the page. We are here and ready to help on a 24/7 basis – any day of the year.

Jump To A Specific Section

  1. Time Limit For Personal Injury Claims – What Is It?
  2. Time Limit For Personal Injury Claims– The Date Of Knowledge
  3. Claims Involving Injuries To Children
  4. Claiming On Behalf Of Someone With A Reduced Mental Capacity
  5. No Win No Fee Lawyers – Work With The Experts On Our Panel

Time Limit For Personal Injury Claims – What Is It?

We can find the answer to this question in the Limitation Act 1980. It states that, generally, you must begin a personal injury claim within 3 years of the date of your injury. The process of making a claim does not have to be finished within 3 years – it only needs to have been started.

What is the personal injury time limit?

This could involve steps such as officially notifying those who you believe to have caused your injuries that you intend to make a claim against them. This is an example of the pre-action protocols that must be followed if you intend to make a claim.

Whilst this time limit should typically be adhered to whenever possible, the following sections will inform you of certain situations where you could still claim even if it has been over 3 years since your injury and you have yet to begin a case.

Personal Injury Time Limit – The Date Of Knowledge

Following an accident, you may sustain injuries that are not immediately apparent. For instance, you could suffer from whiplash due to a road traffic accident. The symptoms do not always manifest themselves on the same date as the accident took place.

Alternatively, your may suffer from noise-induced hearing loss due to a lack of ear protection in a workplace with unsafe noise levels. Cumulative damage such as this can be difficult or impossible to attribute to a specific date.

In these instances and more, you may be able to use the date of knowledge as the start of your 3-year time limit to start a claim. You’ll need to have evidence to prove that:

  • Your injuries did not present themseleves until a later date; or
  • You only connected your injuries with negligence at a later date

Obtaining medical evidence with a date of diagnosis is a good example of how you can support a claim such as this.

Claims Involving Injuries To Children

For any injured person under the age of 18, the 3-year time limit for personal injury claims is suspended. However, this suspension is not indefinite. It ends on the date of the injured child’s 18th birthday – in other words, the date they become an adult. Before then, they cannot make a claim themselves by law.

If a claim is to be made on behalf of the child before they turn 18, it must be done by an appointed individual known as a litigation friend. This can be a parent or legal guardian, but it can be other adults who can establish themselves as having the child’s best interests at heart.

Once the injured child turns 18, they are free to begin their own claim – as long as it has not been made for them before this point.

Claiming On Behalf Of Someone With A Reduced Mental Capacity

In some cases, someone may not have the mental capacity to make a claim themselves. The time limit for starting a claim can vary in these cases.

To give an example of a claim in this category, the injured party may be in a coma as a result of the injury. Their time limit would not begin until they reached a stage in their recovery where they were deemed capable of making a claim of their own volition. This can also apply to claimants who suffer from psychological conditions unrelated to the injury for which they are claiming, for example, if they have suffered from a mental health condition since birth that impacts their ability to claim.

The time limit would remain suspended for as long as the injured person does not have the mental capacity to claim. A litigation friend could be appointed to claim on behalf of the claimant with a reduced mental capacity while the time limit is suspended.

Get in touch with our advisors today if you require any further guidance. We understand that every claim is unique, and we are here to assist in any way that we can.

No Win No Fee Lawyers – Work With The Experts On Our Panel

You may now be more familiar with the time limit for personal injury claims; however, you may still find yourself confused by other parts of the claim process. If so, then you could find it helpful to enlist the services of an experienced No Win No Fee solicitor.

When you work with a solicitor from our panel on a No Win No Fee basis, they are paid only following the conclusion of a successful claim. The percentage they are permitted to take from your settlement is capped by law. Should your claim fail, then your lawyer does not take this percentage. There are also generally no upfront fees to cover.

The advantages of making a No Win No Fee claim include avoiding the financial risk that funding legal representation by paying upfront can pose. In addition, having an experienced lawyer by your side can help you understand other aspects of the process of claiming.

To find out if you could be eligible to have a No Win No Fee lawyer assist you with your claim, get in touch today. Our advisors can also give you a personalised estimate of how much compensation you may receive.

You can also check out some of our other guides here:

Reach out using the contact information at the top of the page for more information on the time limit for personal injury claims.