In New York, you have three years from the date of your accident to file a personal injury lawsuit for a premises liability case, per CVP §214.
While this is straightforward, several factors can affect the window you have to file your claim, and you may also need to file additional paperwork before filing your lawsuit.
Filing a Claim for an Accident on Private Property
Premises liability cases cover a property owner’s failure to maintain a safe location for visitors, free from obvious defects and/or with sufficient warning of potential risks. Your three-year statute of limitations applies to a number of accident scenarios, including incidents that take place at any of the following locations:
- Grocery stores
- Entertainment venues
- Parking lots and garages
- Elevators and escalators
- Residential homes
- Office buildings
- Department stores
- Private land
- Sports venues
These areas are usually owned by individuals or companies rather than by government departments. That means it is the responsibility of those individuals or companies to maintain the premises. Failure to do so leaves property owners open to premises liability lawsuits, as long as they are filed within that three-year timeline.
Functions of And Misconceptions Regarding the Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations does not mean you have three years to complete your case and receive damages. It is simply a deadline for filing the paperwork to initiate lawsuit proceedings. The process of actually going through the lawsuit—compiling documentation, interviewing and deposing witnesses, negotiating, and preparing for trial–comes after filing.
That being said, the three-year window should not be wasted. Not only is it spent getting you to your maximum medical recovery, but it also provides our team the opportunity to get started on:
- Gathering evidence
- Obtaining police reports
- Procuring medical records
- Consulting experts
- Valuing your case
- Negotiating with the other party
- Reviewing settlement offers
- Prepping for the filing
This time should be spent understanding the full extent of your injuries and preserving evidence.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Some premises liability cases may result in fatalities, such as from dog attacks or falls. In this instance, you could be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
The statute of limitations is then two years from the date of the individual’s passing, according to EPT §5-4.1.
Filing a Claim for an Accident on Public Property
Your window for filing becomes trickier if the accident occurred on public property maintained by a city, county, or state. These differ from other cases because you are bringing your lawsuit against the government, not a private citizen or enterprise.
Many cities or states have laws that protect them from liability, which also makes pursuing this kind of suit more challenging. This kind of premises liability can arise from accidents that occur at:
- Public schools
- Government buildings
- Public parks
In New York, you have a year and 90 days to file a claim against a city or state government, per CVP §217-A. Much like in personal injury, the deadline is dated from the time the accident occurred.
What Is a Notice of Claim?
Filing a claim against a city or state requires an additional piece of paperwork filed first, called a “notice of claim.” This essentially gives the government a heads up about the lawsuit and allows them to investigate the claim.
This is similar to a personal injury suit, in which lawyers may inform the other party of their intention to file and lay out the evidence for the case. This can also allow the parties to negotiate.
Your notice of claim must be filed within 90 days of the accident, per GMU §50-E. Without it, your case may be dismissed, though some exceptions are made for the late filing of a notice. The document will need to contain the following:
- Your personal contact information
- The nature of your accident
- The circumstances of the claim (including the when, where, how)
- The cost of your damages
We Can Help You File a Claim Against the Government
As you can imagine, this is a lot of information to compile on short notice, roughly three months after your accident. Our team can help you handle this process, aiding you in filling out the notice and valuing your case to help reach fair compensation.
Moreover, this is the early phase of your lawsuit; more research and evidence gathering can continue after filing the notice of claim.
Filing a Wrongful Death Case Against the Government
Deaths due to negligence can occur on public property as well, leaving governments open to liability. You have 90 days from the date of your loved one’s passing to file a wrongful death lawsuit against a government entity.
Our Attorneys Can Ensure You Don’t Miss Your Deadline to File
The statute of limitations for filing a premises liability claim depends on the circumstances of the accident. However, regardless of whether you were injured on private or government property, you have a right to pursue damages if your accident was due to negligent property maintenance.
Call the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP today at (516) 358-6900 for a free consultation on your premises liability case.
For a free legal consultation, call 516-358-6900