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Pennsylvania Statute of Limitations

A statute of limitations is a statute, or law, that restricts the period of time, after certain events, that a person may initiate legal proceedings.  These time limits vary depending on the type of case and the state where the particular cause of action occurred.  After the time limit has passed, the injured person no longer has the right to sue to recovery money damages, unless a legal exception applies.  The following provides a brief summary, in alphabetical order, of some of the limitations periods for the state of Pennsylvania for those actions related to personal injury, medical malpractice, and some products liability.  Please contact a qualified Pennsylvania lawyer to find out how a statute of limitations applies to your situation. 

Fraud:
Actions based on fraud must be filed within 2 years. 

Libel-Slander-Defamation:
These types of actions must be filed within 1 year from the date of the action.

Medical Malpractice:
All actions against medical professionals must be filed within 2 years of the date of the act resulting in the injury, or within 2 years of the date the medical malpractice injury was, or should have been, discovered. 

Personal Injury:
Personal injury actions must be filed within 2 years from the date of the injury, or within 2 years from the date the injury was, or should have been, discovered.

Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Actions Chart

Product Liability:
Product liability actions must be filed within 2 years from the date of the injury, or within 2 years from the date the injury was, or should have been, discovered. 

Professional Malpractice:
All actions against professionals must be filed within 2 years of the date of the act resulting in the injury.

Wrongful Death:
Wrongful death actions must be filed within 2 years of the date of death, or from the date the decedent could have reasonably discovered the cause of his or her injury through reasonable diligence.

Special Rules Tolling the Statute of Limitations:
A statute of limitations is tolled when certain conditions are present.  When a statute is tolled, the limitations period is essentially put on hold for a period of time.  Some typical reasons that a statute is tolled include situations when the victim of the injury was a minor at the time of the injury (minority), when the victim of the injury was mentally incompetent at the time of the injury (mental incompetence), and when the defendant has filed bankruptcy. 

In Pennsylvania, when the injured party is an “unemancipated minor,” that person must file his or her legal claim within 2 years of his or her 18th birthday.  An “unemancipated minor” is an individual under the age of 18 who is not completely self-supporting.  A minor who is emancipated (completely self-supporting) at the time the injury occurred must file his or her legal claim within 2 years from the date of the injury, unless otherwise provided by law.  Pennsylvania does not toll the limitations period for insanity unless specifically provided for by law. 

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Disclaimer: The information throughout The Personal Injury Directory is not intended to be or to replace legal advice. The information throughout The Personal Injury Directory is intended to provide general information regarding personal injury law. If you are interested in bringing a personal injury lawsuit, contact an accident attorney in your area.
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