The statute of limitations for child injuries in Indiana is the same as for an adult: two years. Yet, the statutory deadline doesn’t start until the child reaches 18 years old. Most minors have until their 20th birthday to pursue compensation via litigation.
The Personal Injury Statute of Limitations for Child Injuries
In general, a person must file a lawsuit within two years of getting hurt to protect their right to recover compensation through the court system, per IC § 34-11-2-4. That rule applies to adults who are not under any legal disability that would prevent them from being able to take legal action for themselves.
Legal Disabilities and Statutes of Limitations
Indiana law does not allow minors to take legal action for themselves; they are deemed “incompetent.” When a person in Indiana turns 18, they become an adult, capable of taking legal action for themselves as long as they do not have any other legal disability.
When a Minor Becomes an Adult
IC § 34-11-6-1 notes that a “person who is under legal disabilities when the cause of action accrues may bring the action within two (2) years after the disability is removed.” In other words, when the injured child turns 18, he may file a personal injury lawsuit seeking money damages for his personal injuries and losses.
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The Legal Impact of Missing the Filing Deadline
There’s a reason why your filing deadline is called the “statute of limitations.” That’s because it limits how long you have to file a lawsuit. No matter how strong your case is against the party who harmed you, the court will refuse to hear your case if it isn’t filed on time.
You will have few financial recovery options if the statute of limitations expires on your case. The insurance company would also have little incentive to process your claim. In short: if the statute of limitations expires on your case, you might have to pay for your injury-related losses out of pocket.
The Insurer May Contest Your Claim After the Filing Period Expires
Negotiating with the insurance company does not extend the filing deadline. Neither does collecting evidence or interviewing witnesses. The insurance company has no obligation to share your claim’s filing deadline with you––but rest assured, the claims adjuster knows it.
If you wait too long to file your claim, not only could there be a lack of evidence to support it, but the insurer could deny your case. When you partner with a child injury lawyer in Indiana, they’ll assess each of your case’s filing deadlines and pursue compensation for what you need. They will also prevent the insurance company from purposefully delaying your case, impeding your right to recovery.
Types of Compensable Child Injury Cases
Children can get injured just by playing and exploring their world. Scrapes and bruises are a normal part of childhood. When a child suffers severe injuries because of someone else’s negligence, however, a child accident lawyer can seek money damages for your family.
Some of the most common types of child injuries that lead to personal injury claims or lawsuits include:
- Motor vehicle collisions involving trucks, cars, and bicycles
- Accidents at school or on the school bus
- Swimming pool accidents
- Dog bites
- Sports injuries
- Injuries involving faulty or dangerous playground equipment
- Defective products, particularly children’s furniture, car seats, toys, and strollers
If your child got hurt in one of these situations or another instance that involved someone else’s negligence, you should consider the benefits of partnering with a lawyer.
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You do Not Have to Wait Until Your Child Turns 18 to Seek Compensation
Although your child cannot file a lawsuit until he turns 18, as his parent, you could take legal action on his behalf before that time. Indiana law imposes additional procedural rules on cases that involve seeking money damages for an injured child.
Yet, since we devote ourselves entirely to personal injury cases, we know the laws and procedures that apply to your case. With our team on your side, we will:
- Investigate your child’s accident and injuries
- Identify the liable parties
- Estimate your injury-related expenses (both past and future)
- File your case within all applicable deadlines
- Interview witnesses and consult with field experts
- Prove negligence
- Protect you from aggressive insurance companies
- Handle all case-related communications
- Argue your rights at trial
Our firm offers free case reviews where you can explore your options with no pressure or obligation. We also work on a contingency-fee basis, so you can access our legal services at no upfront cost.
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Explore Your Options with Sevenish Law Firm, P.C.
At Sevenish Law Firm, P.C., we help families who suffer injuries through the fault of others. Our firm exclusively handles personal injury cases. We do not take on other kinds of cases. You can call us today for a confidential consultation.
Call or text 317-636-7777 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form