If you are considering taking legal
action, you should be aware that strict time limits apply to most
compensation cases. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can
get you the compensation you deserve. If you believe that
your case has gone beyond its time limit, you should contact our
The law is very complex in this
area and in some cases a court may decide to allow a claim to
proceed out of time, depending on the circumstances of the
Time Limits Categories
Different types of cases have different time limits in which
they have to be pursued. It is important that you receive proper
advice on the time limit in your case from your lawyer but the
following is a very broad outline of commonly encountered time
In the UK, there is a standard three year time limit for cases
involving personal claims. The limit applies from the date of the
accident or from date of knowledge that you have been injured,
whichever is the latest.
Applying the time limit from the date of knowledge rather than
date of accident is particular relevant in cases such as
asbestos-related claims. Individuals who have been exposed to
asbestos may not find out for decades after exposure that they have
contracted an asbestos-related disease.
In claims which involve a death, the next of kin or a dependant
can usually bring an action within 3 years of the date of death. If
an individual was dealing with a personal injury claim at the time
of their death, their next of kin can continue with the claim
within a three year deadline.
CICA time limit
If a case is being presented to the Criminal Injuries
Compensation Authority (CICA) the general time limit for submission
is two years from the date of the incident.
In cases of professional negligence the time limit is generally
six years from the date of the negligent act.
Different time limits are applied to claims involving injuries
on ships or aeroplanes. These are commonly only two years from
the incident. Many foreign countries have different time limits for
bringing an action for compensation. For example, the standard time
limit for pursuing a personal injury claim in Spain is one year, in
France it is ten years and in the USA it varies dependant on
Mental Health Act
For adults treated under the Mental Health Act, the three year
time limit does not begin until they are discharged as a patient
and their legal incapacity is removed. For children treated under
the Mental Health Act, the three year time limit does not begin
until the date of the 18th birthday.
For children under the age of 18, the time limit runs up until
their 21st birthday.
Please contact our specialist solicitors for further information
regarding time limits for your individual compensation claim.
The standard three year time limit applies from the date of
injury or the date of the victim's knowledge of the
incident. Qualification in claims under the Consumer Protection Act
1987 must be obtained at court within the year of the product being
supplied i.e. put into circulation by the
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