top of page
  • Leitner Varughese Warywoda

The Time Limit to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in New York: Why Acting Fast is Crucial

If you've been injured due to someone else's negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. However, in New York, the time limit to file a personal injury lawsuit is three years from the date of the incident. This timeframe is called the statute of limitations, and once it expires, you will be barred from filing a lawsuit to seek damages.

In this post, we will discuss the three-year statute of limitations in New York and provide valuable insights into why acting fast is essential when seeking compensation for your injuries.

The Three-Year Statute of Limitations:

Every state in the United States has a statute of limitations that dictates the timeframe for filing a personal injury lawsuit. In New York, the statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits is three years from the date of the occurrence of the incident or accident. Whether you've been injured in a car crash, slip and fall, or any other type of incident, the three-year rule applies. Therefore, it's crucial to act fast and seek legal help as soon as possible to avoid running out of time.

Building a Strong Case Takes Time:

Building a strong case to recover compensation for your injuries takes time. Personal injury cases often require comprehensive investigation and evidence collection, which can be time-consuming. This means that you should consult with an attorney as soon as possible after the incident or accident.

Your attorney needs enough time, working with you, to collect all the necessary evidence, analyze the medical reports, interview witnesses, and file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires. This process can take several months, so it's essential to work with an attorney who can get started immediately.

The Risk of Losing Evidence:

Another reason to act fast when filing a personal injury lawsuit is the risk of losing evidence. Witnesses' memories can fade over time, physical evidence can become worn or tampered with, or documents can go missing. When you act quickly, there is a better chance of preserving crucial evidence that can bolster your case.

For example, if you were injured in a vehicle collision, an experienced attorney would help you obtain crucial evidence such as the police report, witness statements, and any available surveillance footage. If you wait too long, this evidence may get lost, and it will be difficult to build a strong case.

In New York State, the rules regarding the time limit for filing a notice of claim against a municipality are different from those for filing a personal injury lawsuit generally. Typically, you must file a notice of claim against a municipality within 90 days of the incident or accident that caused the injury or property damage.

This requirement applies to any claims made against a municipality, regardless of the type of incident or injury. Additionally, the notice of claim must contain specific information, including the time, date, and location of the incident, as well as a detailed explanation of the incident and the injuries or losses suffered.

It's worth noting that filing a notice of claim does not mean that you are filing a lawsuit against the municipality. Still, it preserves your right to sue if negotiations fail, and you need to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation.

Moreover, in some cases, there are different rules for filing notices of claims depending on the circumstances. For example, if a claim involves medical malpractice or wrongful death, you may have a more extended time period to file a notice of claim than if the claim were for property damage resulting from negligence.

Filing a notice of claim against a municipality can be complex, and it's important to work with an experienced personal injury attorney with expertise in handling cases that involve municipal actions.


In summary, it's essential to understand the significance of the statute of limitations in New York for filing a personal injury lawsuit. The three-year time frame is relatively short, so it's critical to act fast to preserve evidence and build a strong case. Waiting too long to seek legal help can have serious consequences, and you might lose your right to seek compensation. By working with an experienced personal injury attorney, you can increase your chances of success and receive fair compensation for your injuries. Don't wait-- contact a qualified personal injury attorney in New York to learn more about your legal options.


bottom of page