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What Is the Personal Injury Statute of Limitations in West Virginia?

west virginia statute of limitations

If you do not comply with the West Virginia statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits, a judge will most likely not allow your claim to move forward, regardless of its merits and the losses you experienced. Some exceptions may extend the filing deadline, but you should have an experienced attorney from Warner Law Offices, PLLC, review your case before relying on an extension. Call us today to schedule your free consultation. 

If you were harmed at little to no fault of your own and want to file a lawsuit, you must do so before the deadline set by the statute of limitations passes. The amount of time you have to file a personal injury lawsuit varies from state to state. 

Remember, you will most likely be barred from collecting compensation if you do not file before the correct deadline. Therefore, it is critical to recruit an experienced personal injury lawyer to handle your case, especially if you have any doubts about the governing statute of limitations. 

Look no further. The top-tier legal team at Warner Law Offices, PLLC, will make sure you do not miss the West Virginia statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits and help you fight for compensation in settlement negotiations and court. 

Our founding partner, Bobby Warner, is recognized as one of the top trial lawyers in West Virginia. He has made sure that every member of our team shares his work ethic, commitment to our community, and passion for helping injury victims pursue justice. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation. 

How Long is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims in West Virginia?

The deadline set by the West Virginia statute of limitations for personal injury claims is normally two years after the date of the incident that led to your harm. It is best to speak to an attorney well before the deadline nears. This will give them time to gather evidence, build a strong case, and notify the other party and the courts of your intent to sue.

Given how long it sometimes takes litigation to unfold, choosing an attorney quickly can also help reduce the time you spend waiting to receive compensation in your case. It can also be advantageous to act before witness memories fade and decrease the time the other party has to tamper with evidence.

At Warner Law Offices, PLLC, our West Virginia personal injury attorney can also push back against attempts by the other party’s insurance company to delay investigations and negotiations. Remember, they hope you miss the deadline set by the statute of limitations and lose your right to file a lawsuit. We are well-versed in the tactics used by insurance companies thanks to our decades of combined experience in personal injury law. Let us fight for you. 

What Happens If the Statute of Limitations Has Passed?

If you do not file your personal injury claim before the statute of limitations runs, a judge will likely refuse to hear your case. Further, the at-fault party will not negotiate with you fairly if you miss the filing deadline. As it nears, it may make things even more difficult, and acting quickly is the best way to protect yourself.

A judge will not accept an argument that you didn’t know about the statute of limitations in West Virginia, and the at-fault party certainly won’t step up to compensate you if you miss the deadline. In most cases, failure to comply with the statute of limitations will eliminate your ability to seek legal compensation and your bargaining power in out-of-court settlement negotiations.

The attorneys at Warner Law Offices, PLLC, have experience in multiple areas of personal injury law. Among other things, we will use that experience to make sure you comply with the filing deadline and do not miss out on your opportunity to secure compensation and justice. 

Learn more about our firm’s commitment to justice and client service in our personal injury blogs. You can also check out our client reviews.

Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims

It is not unusual for clients to ask, “Can the statute of limitations be extended?” Yes, it can, but only in very limited circumstances. For example, it can be extended if:

  • The defendant evaded your lawsuit by leaving the state, hiding within the state, or changing their identity.
  • The plaintiff was a minor at the time of the accident.
  • The plaintiff suffered from insanity at the time of the accident. 

In some personal injury cases, the statute of limitations won’t start counting down until you are aware or should have become aware of your injury. This is known as the “discovery rule.”

For example, you may not know that a surgeon left a sponge or other object in your body until it makes you sick. The West Virginia statute of limitations for medical malpractice can be extended in these cases. It would be similarly delayed for people with asbestos-related diseases who receive diagnoses decades after exposure.

However, never assume that a judge will grant you an exception to the statute of limitations, as they decide the merits of extension requests based on the unique circumstances of each case. If they deny your request for an extension, you can appeal, but this will result in an even longer litigation process with no guarantee that you will ever see your day in court.

Talk to Warner Law Offices, PLLC, as soon as possible if you think you may have a viable claim. Knowing that your case is being handled by a skilled professional will give you peace of mind. Once we file your claim with the appropriate court before the deadline passes, we can move forward with settlement negotiations.

Should I Settle My Personal Injury Case with the Insurance Company?

You can accept an early settlement from an insurance company for your personal injury case, but doing so doesn’t always yield the best outcome. Insurance companies try to save money by minimizing or denying the value of your claim. They do not have your best interests at heart.

You should be especially wary of a quick settlement offer, as it likely represents an attempt by the insurance company to save money at your expense. For example, if you have a back injury from a car accident, you may not know until a year later whether you’ll be able to return to work at full capacity, not to mention the full costs of your medical and rehabilitation expenses. By accepting an early settlement, you won’t be able to recoup the additional cost.

Remember, never talk to the other party’s insurance company or accept a settlement offer without consulting with an experienced West Virginia personal injury attorney. This is the best way to protect your interests. A personal injury attorney at Warner Law Offices, PLLC, can review settlement offers, provide legal counsel, and push back against unscrupulous insurance company tactics aimed at reducing your compensation.

Contact An Attorney Before the Statute of Limitations Expires

Do not let the personal injury statute of limitations run out before you file your lawsuit. Contact Warner Law Offices, PLLC, as soon as possible after an accident so we can evaluate your case and recommend the best steps to preserve your claim.

Our award-winning attorneys have the experience and in-depth knowledge of West Virginia personal injury law needed to take on complex cases and navigate them successfully through the legal system. We provide excellent legal representation to every client who walks through our doors, treating them with the respect and compassion they deserve. Let us fight for justice and compensation on their behalf. 

Don’t hesitate to contact Warner Law Offices, PLLC. Call us at (304) 345-6789 or reach out online to schedule your free consultation. We take our West Virginia personal injury cases on a contingency basis, which means you pay nothing unless we win your case. 

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Attorney Bobby Warner
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Bobby Warner

Bobby has received many accolades throughout the years from both his peers in the legal community, as well as the media. The National Trial Lawyers association named Bobby a Top 100 Trial Lawyer and he has been selected as a Member of the Nation’s Top One Percent. Additionally, he has been named a Best Attorneys of America by Rue Ratings, which also named Warner Law Offices to its Best Law Firms of America.