What is the Personal Injury Statute of Limitations in Colorado?

Posted On December 28 2021 | Personal Injury

If you or somebody you care about has sustained an injury caused by the actions of another individual, business, or entity, then you need to file your claim as soon as possible. We strongly suggest working with a skilled personal injury lawyer in Boulder who can help you with every aspect of your claim. An attorney will make sure that you understand the Colorado personal injury statute of limitations.

The Statutory Timeline for Filing Claims

Every state sets time limits for how long individuals have to file personal injury lawsuits against alleged negligent parties. In Colorado, the personal injury statute of limitations is two years from the date an injury occurs. The statute of limitations applies to most types of injuries that occur, including those that happen as a result of slip and fall accidents, boating accidents, intentional acts of violence, premises liability claims, and others. 

What this means is that injury victims need to file their claims against the alleged negligent party within this two-year timeframe, or they will likely lose the ability to recover any compensation at all. Claims filed beyond this two-year time frame will ultimately be dismissed.

Unlike other states, Colorado has a separate statute of limitations revolving around injuries that occur as a result of motor vehicle accidents. If you are filing a lawsuit against an at-fault driver after a vehicle accident, the statute of limitations is three years from the date the injury occurs, not two years.

Are There Exceptions to the Time Limit?

There are a few exceptions to the Colorado personal injury statute of limitations. Some scenarios where the statute of limitations clock may be paused include injuries that occur to a person who is mentally incompetent or under the age of 18 at the time the injury occurs. In these situations, the clock will be stopped until that individual turns 18 or when the period of legal disability is over. However, if there is a legal representative who can file a lawsuit on that person’s behalf, there will not be a change to the two-year filing deadline. 

Additionally, if at some point after an initial injury, but before a lawsuit can be filed, the alleged negligent party leaves the state of Colorado or hides within the state and cannot be served with the lawsuit, the statute of limitations time frame will not begin until this person is found or returns to Colorado.

What About Insurance Carrier Deadlines?

It is also important to keep in mind that insurance carriers have strict reporting deadlines. If there are insurance carriers involved in the claim, which is almost certainly going to be the case for incidents like vehicle accidents, then the injury must be reported within a day or two after the incident occurs. If an individual fails to file a claim with an insurance carrier as soon as possible, then the insurance carrier could delay or deny the claim.

Regardless of whether or not you think you will be resolved through insurance carriers or a personal injury lawsuit against an alleged negligent party, we encourage you to reach out to a skilled attorney in Colorado who can examine the facts of your case and make sure that your claim is filed on time.