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Home > Brain Injury Statute of Limitations in Pennsylvania

Brain Injury Statute of Limitations in Pennsylvania

Statute of Limitations in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, the statute of limitations on brain injury cases is generally two years. But the clock can start ticking later if you were medically diagnosed weeks or months after the accident, not necessarily on the date of the injury. The dedicated and experienced attorneys at Cordisco & Saile LLC will fight for your rights and work to secure the compensation you deserve. 

Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations for filing a brain injury lawsuit is typically two years from the accident date. However, in some circumstances, the two-year limit starts when you are diagnosed with a brain injury, not necessarily on the injury date. 

Brain injuries are devastating. They can leave you wondering how to pay piled-up medical bills and other expenses, especially if you can’t work anymore due to the injury. If you or a loved one has experienced a brain injury, you don’t have to navigate the process of filing a lawsuit alone. Speak with a skilled, compassionate, and dedicated attorney at Cordisco & Saile LLC to help you through the legal process. Our experienced lawyers will fight for your right to a deserved compensation. 

What Is a Statute of Limitations?

The statute of limitations is the deadline for filing a lawsuit against the negligent party responsible for the incident causing your injury. Even if you have suffered harm and are entitled to compensation, a court may bar you from bringing a legal case if the statute of limitations has expired.

Statute of limitations periods vary by jurisdiction and types of actions involved. There may also be separate deadlines for civil actions and criminal charges resulting from the same conduct. 

What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Brain Injury in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations for filing civil lawsuits in personal injury actions is two years. A brain injury generally falls under this category, whether the harm was from medical malpractice, slip-and-fall, a car accident, or a sports injury. The default is that the statute of limitations begins on the day the injury occurred, such as the date of the sports match that resulted in the brain injury.

What Is the Purpose of the Statute of Limitations?

These statutes are in place to ensure that a claimant files a lawsuit within a reasonable amount of time. The laws are designed to promote public policies of fairness and efficiency in the courts. 

These deadlines are meant to prevent potential defendants from unfair litigation and protracted jeopardy for their actions by ensuring they receive a judgment within a reasonable period. 

They also seek to ensure matters get resolved within a reasonable amount of time and protect the integrity of the courts. 

Evidence and witness statements are vital to litigation. Over time, however, this proof becomes less reliable. Memories fade, and records get lost or degrade. Allowing cases to proceed with such questionable evidence would be unfair and inequitable, and the results would not be trustworthy. Judges and juries would be unable to make informed decisions, inconclusive evidence would carry too much weight, and incorrect outcomes would be more likely.

What Are the Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations?

In some cases, fairness also mandates that the statute of limitations is delayed or paused. The two-year time limit generally starts on the date of injury, but Pennsylvania law allows for the following exceptions:

  • The brain injury isn’t diagnosed on the date of the accident. The concept of discovery means that the two-year deadline may not start to run until a medical professional diagnoses you as having a brain injury. For example, some traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions, are not always readily apparent. You may not realize the extent of harm until weeks or months after the incident.
  • The brain injury victim is a minor. If the injured person is a minor, the two-year clock generally doesn’t start until they become an adult. In Pennsylvania, this age is 18. 
  • The defendant leaves Pennsylvania or lives in Pennsylvania under a false name. In a just legal system, people shouldn’t escape liability by skirting the law or getting out of town. Under Title 42, Section 5532, if a person conceals their identity or leaves the state for four months or more, this time doesn’t count as part of the two-year statute of limitations. 

Can the Statute of Limitations Deadline Be Extended?

You can ask the court to extend the statute of limitations based on one of the qualifying exceptions. 

An attorney can make this argument on your behalf. Working with a lawyer also ensures that you have experienced legal representation to submit the required court filings on time. Bucks County brain injury lawyers at Cordisco & Saile LLC know the system and solely represent injured people.

Why Is It Important to Contact a Brain Injury Lawyer After an Accident?

Brain injuries are difficult to diagnose, and it’s common for people to receive emergency treatment and be sent home with mild symptoms, only to have their circumstances change a few weeks or months later. Over that period, evidence of an injury may disappear.

A lawyer can help you by doing the following:

  • Getting you an evaluation from a reputable and skilled medical professional
  • Investigate the circumstances surrounding your injury thoroughly
  • Gathering evidence on the circumstances that led to the brain injury
  • Interviewing witnesses about the injury-causing accident and how your life has changed after the injury
  • Justifying a change in the statute of limitations if you are bringing a lawsuit more than two years after your brain injury occurred

Speaking with an attorney as soon as possible is the start of building a solid case and receiving the compensation you’re owed. Cordisco & Saile LLC can help you through every step of this process, acting as your legal representation and support system. 

Trust the Experienced Brain Injury Lawyers at Cordisco & Saile LLC

Cordisco & Saile LLC are among Pennsylvania’s most highly respected brain injury lawyers, with offices in Bensalem and throughout Bucks County, Montgomery County, and the Lehigh Valley. Our award-winning legal team has been recognized by the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers and the Top 100 Lawyers by the American Trial Lawyers Association. 

Our law firm has worked with numerous clients who have suffered severe injuries because of another’s fault. As dedicated advocates, we have worked diligently to help them get awarded what they deserve. We have recovered millions of dollars in settlements for our brain-injured clients, including the following:

  • $10,000,000 for brain and spinal injuries in a Philadelphia truck accident
  • $2,900,000 for brain injuries from a Bucks County motorcycle accident
  • $1,000,000 for brain injuries from a Bucks County car accident
  • $470,000 for brain injuries from a wave runner accident
  • $242,500 for brain injury from a minor impact rear-end accident
  • $195,000 for a brain injury from a Bucks County bicycle accident

If you or a loved one has been in an accident resulting in a possible brain injury, contact Cordisco & Saile, LLC, today for a free case evaluation

Written By Michael L. Saile, Jr.
Written By Michael L. Saile, Jr.

Managing Attorney at Cordisco & Saile

Serving as a personal injury attorney in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Michael has been honored as both a Brain Injury Top 25 Lawyer by National Trial Lawyers and a 2024 Super Lawyer. He earned his J. D. at Widener University School of Law where he was a member of the Moe Levine Trial Advocacy Honor Society. Saile is also the author of two publications titled “Not Another Bad Lawyer” and “Don’t Crash Again”.

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