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Trucking Injury FAQ

What Is the Time Limit for Filing a Trucking Accident Lawsuit?

A tractor-trailer or 18-wheeler wreck can give rise to a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. This means the lawsuit will be subject to the statute of limitations, which requires a person to take legal action within a specified period or else the claim is barred. The point of having statute of limitations is to make sure that a person is not punished for a crime or accident committed long ago that is just recently coming to light. As time goes on, evidence diminishes as well, making it harder to come up with a verdict for a trucking accident.

Statute of Limitations in Each State

The statute of limitations varies across the country, as each state has different laws. A majority of states have implemented a two-year limitation on all wrongful death claims in truck accidents. For instance, in Texas, the statute of limitations for bodily injury claims related to a person's recklessness or negligence is two years from the date of injury (or the date when the injury could have been reasonably discovered). In some cases, this period may be "tolled" because the victim had a legal disability, including being a minor at the time of the accident. In general, if both parties agree on the matter, then the time allotted for filing an accident lawsuit may be shortened or lengthened.

You can find a full list of state statute of limitations at the bottom of the page here.

The Importance of Collecting Evidence Early

To develop a strong case following a truck accident, it takes more than just filing within the statute of limitations. You need to begin your case quickly after the incident so that your lawyer can perform timely truck accident investigation and discovery, gathering as much evidence as possible. This may include identifying a defective part, determining if property maintenance occurred, and even assessing whether trucking regulations were violated. A timely response can also make it easier to locate anyone who witnessed the accident.

It is important to act quickly to preserve evidence from the electronic on-board recorder, maintenance records, and driver logbooks, as these could be lost or destroyed as time passes.

Why You Need to Act Now to Preserve Your Case

The bottom line is that you do not want to risk losing your right to compensation by failing to take timely action.

Even information and evidence like a failed or missed truck inspection—which could significantly help your claim—may be lost in a year or two. In almost all cases, it is better to report your accident sooner so that it can be determined if you should file a claim. When a truck accident claim is filed quickly, there is better chance of all the evidence coming to light and the trial moving along more efficiently.

If you are wondering whether or not you have time to file a claim, reach out to a truck accident lawyer from Arnold & Itkin. We can help you understand your case.

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  • $205 Million Confidential Settlement Obtained for Numerous Clients Arnold & Itkin reached a record $205,000,000 settlement on behalf of clients after several years of hard-fought litigation. The case settled just before trial was set to begin.
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  • $117 Million Largest Single-Event Personal Injury Verdict in Louisiana History Arnold & Itkin represented a pregnant woman who experienced stomach pain and called Acadian Ambulance. The driver of the ambulance drove the ambulance into the back of a sugar cane truck causing the plaintiff's spine to be severed at T4 and for her ...
  • $116 Million Confidential Settlement Arnold & Itkin LLP negotiated a massive nine figure settlement on behalf of their clients after several years of hard fought litigation.
  • $110 Million Record Settlement Achieved for Victims of Defective Products Arnold & Itkin obtained a record settlement for individuals harmed by defective, dangerous products. The result exemplifies our commitment to clients and justice for those seriously injured by the conduct of others.
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  • $92.7 Million Record Settlement for Burn Injury Victim Arnold & Itkin LLP secured a substantial settlement for a man who suffered severe burns in an accident at his job. The settlement set a new record statewide for workers with similar injuries.
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