Se Habla Espanol

This is not s a simple question. Some people will automatically say two years from the date of the injury.
But that is only correct some of the time. As an example, if a State, County or City vehicle hits you while
on your bike, your injury claim ( if you are 18 years old) starts when you were hit most of the time. But
suppose you are in a coma, that disability may extend the time. IF you are under 18, that will extend the
time. But what is the time for an auto wreck when there is a State, County or City vehicle involved?

Now comes the tricky part for that special class of defendants. You must do the Notice of Claim within
180 days. That is not the same as filing a lawsuit for the auto wreck, boating accident or bike crash. It is
simply putting them on notice. After the 180 days expires from service of the notice of claim (which
itself is tricky), you must then commence a lawsuit for whatever the event was, within 180 days. But
again when does the 180 days start is a question. The general explanation is when you knew or should
have known of the injury. The obvious ones are automobile wrecks or collisions. You know when that
occurred.

The not so obvious events are medical malpractice by leaving something in a person or no way of
knowing there was medical malpractice until the problem surfaces. Or, a hit and run where it turns out
the person leaving the scene was a government employee.

With all that said, the Federal Government has its own rules for Notice of claim and although some
argue the two year statue may apply, the better view is that until a Notice of Claim is filed, the statute
does not commence. Suppose it is a postal truck, or a border patrol agent, these would be federal
matters and the Federal Tort Claims Act not the State Statute would apply.

So before you decide that you waited too long, it is best to check with a lawyer as to when the statute of
limitations began or if it did.

Herman “Gib” Zickerman, attorney and partner at Tucson law firm, West, Longenbaugh and Zickerman, PLLC, specializes in personal injury cases, real estate law and business matters.