What is there to know about slip and fall statute of limitations?

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

Generally speaking, a statute of limitations can be defined as the statutory time frame within which a plaintiff can successfully file a lawsuit in court. If a plaintiff waits too long to file their claim, the claim may be dismissed in whole or in part by the court, regardless of the quality of the plaintiff’s evidence or the severity of the damages caused by the defendant’s willful or negligent actions.

California Code of Civil Procedure Section 335.1 provides a two-year maximum time frame for bringing slip and fall cases to court. In a broader sense, this two-year time limit applies to an action for “injury or death of an individual caused by the wrongful act or negligence of another.” While this includes actions beyond slip and falls, claims related to this type of incident fall within the scope of the term of this section.

While there are some exceptions to this two-year time frame, these are usually only available in very specific circumstances, which is where it is valuable to have an attorney by your side. If you believe your circumstances warrant an exception to the statute of limitations, it is essential that you contact a skilled slip and fall attorney.

Most slip and fall lawsuits end up being settled by mutual agreement that does not involve going to trial. However, potential plaintiffs should not let this create a false sense of security, facing such a case on your own is still difficult, and one misstep could cost you the compensation you are seeking for your injuries.

While all but the most egregious of the incident’s consequences are likely to settle, the pressure on a defendant to settle all but disappears once the statute of limitations has passed. This is simply because, once the two years that the state gives as a legal term have elapsed, the defendant has the right to refuse to reach an agreement without any risk of facing a lawsuit.

Lawsuits can rarely be filed immediately, often taking a long time to file before a case is ready to go to court, meaning there is little time to waste in hiring a lawyer and getting down to business.

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.