Product Liability Statute of Limitations
By Michael Verna on October 05, 2019
If you have been injured by a defective product, it’s imperative that you speak with the lawyers of Bowles & Verna LLP. Helping the people of San Francisco and Walnut Creek, CA, our product liability attorneys will hold designers, manufacturers, and distributors accountable for any harm they have caused you or your loved ones.
It’s important to speak with lawyers about your defective product case as soon as possible since there is a strict statute of limitations in place. Attorneys Richard T. Bowles and Michael P. Verna discuss the basics of statutes of limitations and how they may apply to your case.
What Is a Statute of Limitations?
The statute of limitations refers to a set timeframe in which a person can file a lawsuit. Once this statute of limitations has passed, a lawsuit cannot be filed. Only the most serious kinds of crimes have no statute of limitations attached, such as murder or kidnapping.
Why Statutes of Limitations Are in Place
Statutes of limitations may seem unfair, but they actually help keep our legal system working fairly.
For one, statutes of limitations ensure that any evidence related to the case remains intact and can be safely kept. It also ensures that witness testimony relevant to the case is not affected by changes or lapses in memory over time.
By ensuring evidence is in good condition, a fair case can be brought about.
Statute of Limitations for Defective Product Cases
In the state of California, the statute of limitations on defective product litigation is two years from the date of injury or harmful incident.
The Discovery Rule and Why It Matters
In the state of California, “the discovery rule” applies to the statute of limitations. This rule means that the statute of limitations begins at the moment that a person detects an injury. This is particularly important when it comes to defective products and goods.
Say that a person has been using a defective pharmaceutical for years that has been slowly doing damage to the liver. The person only recently discovers that they have a liver problem and it is linked to the use of said pharmaceutical.
The discovery rule states that the statute of limitations begins when the client learns about the injury, harm, or wrongdoing. This gives injury victims more time to bring a case about and hold negligent parties accountable for what they have done.
Can I File a Lawsuit After the Statute of Limitations Has Expired?
There may be very rare exceptions to the statute of limitations, but generally once this two-year period has passed, the vast majority of people will no longer be able to file a lawsuit.
Speak with Injury Attorneys as Soon as Possible
Even though you have two years to file a lawsuit, it’s imperative that you avoid delays. Legal proceedings can take years to complete even if they end in settlements. Getting your case underway as soon as possible is a prudent idea, and will potentially help increase your chances of a beneficial legal outcome.
Learn More About Product Liability Lawsuits
If you would like to learn more about your legal options after being injured by a defective product, be sure to contact a skilled injury accident lawyer. The lawyers of Bowles & Verna LLP can be reached by phone in Walnut Creek at (925) 935-3300.