When it comes to filing for damages and compensation after a Los Angeles car accident, as with any time of personal injury, the general rule is the sooner, the better. That said, there is legal deadline, also known as a statute of limitations, after which you are no longer permitted to bring a claim. Personal injury claims normally have a limit of two years, and a court will refuse to hear your case if this time limit expires before you file.
You may be wondering why it would take you as long as two years to file your claim – after all, you probably think that you would want to pursue compensation as soon as possible. While that is true in many cases, there are also several reasons why you may not approach a Los Angeles personal injury attorney immediately. Much of the time, these delays lead on from a delay in seeking medical treatment, with some of the common reasons for delaying include:
- Your injuries do not initially appear to be severe, but the pain increases significantly over time
- You may choose to deliberately ignore your pain and put up with your injury as you cannot financially afford to miss work
- The injury may worsen over time. Some types of injuries do not appear to be severe at first, but develop over time and can then become problematic
Delays like these, and the resulting impact of the statute of limitations, are one of the reasons why a Los Angeles personal injury attorney will always recommend that you seek medical attention immediately following an accident, even when you do not feel like you need to.
Common Personal Injuries That Can Have a Delayed Onset
Some of the injuries of which the extent may not immediately be obvious can include the following:
- Soft tissue injuries, which may not be apparent until several days later
- Whiplash, which can take up to 72 hours to develop
- Head injuries
Blood clots/hematomas, which can develop over several days, until the clot starts to put pressure on the brain
After an accident, you should be aware that you do not have to complete treatment before filing a personal injury claim. The best course of action is to seek medical assistance immediately after your accident, however it occurred, and to consult with a Los Angeles personal injury attorney as soon as possible. We can put our legal knowledge and expertise to work on your behalf while you take the time you need to recover from your injuries.
Speak to a Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Today to Find Out How We Could Help
If you, or a loved one, has sustained injuries in any kind of accident, a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer could help you recover damages. However, we cannot act until you instruct us to do so and, as mentioned above, there is a strict time limit on filing a personal injury claim.