If you have been injured in an auto accident caused by a negligent driver in Orange County, you might be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages and other damages you suffered. Waiting too long after the car accident to file a lawsuit against the other driver could result in dismissal of the case because of the statute of limitations in California.
When a car collision results in serious injury, police and the insurance companies whose drivers were involved in the incident usually conduct an accident investigation as soon after the accident as possible. This is because the ability to gather evidence and speak to witnesses becomes more difficult with the passage of time. Evidence may be lost or destroyed, and the ability of witnesses to accurately recall details of what they saw and heard may become impaired.
The statute of limitations imposes an obligation upon the person injured in a car collision to file their lawsuit within two years from the date of the accident. If you fail to do so, the negligent driver you sued could ask the court to dismiss your claim for damages.
The purpose of the statute of limitations is to prevent accident victims from delaying the commencement of a lawsuit and placing the party being sued in an unfavorable position. A negligent driver who causes an auto accident might not be aware that anyone was injured. The driver's ability to interview witnesses or conduct a proper accident investigation might be impaired by the delay caused by the injured party.
Laws pertaining to the statute of limitations are complex and their application to particular car accidents may depend on many factors that are beyond the scope of this posting to cover. This posting is not legal advice, so a person injured in an accident should consult with a personal injury attorney.