A statute of limitations places a deadline on filing a civil or criminal claim. Each state has different statutes of limitations. If you get into an auto accident in South Carolina, you need to know the state’s specific deadline for your type of claim. Otherwise, you could accidentally miss an important time limit and lose your right to recover damages.

South Carolina Code of Laws section 15-3-20 lists the state’s civil statutes of limitations. This statute gives you three years to bring a personal injury claim as a car accident victim. This three-year deadline typically applies to the date of the car accident. However, if you do not discover your injuries until later, the clock will toll (or extend) until the date you discovered them.

Some states have different statutes of limitations for property-damage only lawsuits, but South Carolina is not one of them. If the car accident caused only property damage, and not personal injury, you will still have three years to bring a claim. If a car accident took the life of a loved one, you will have three years from the date of death to file a wrongful death action.

Car accident claims against a government body, such as the City of Florence, have unique statutes of limitations. If you wish to bring a claim against the government in South Carolina, you must do so within one year of discovering your damages – or within one year from the date that another person would have reasonably discovered them. Missing your deadline will generally lead to the courts dismissing your claim.

This blog is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice.