How Long After a Car Accident Can You Claim Injuries
Each state has its own specific timeline, called the statute of limitations, in which a victim of a car accident can claim an injury. If you have been injured in a collision, here are your legal options for bringing an injury claim in Minnesota.
What Does Minnesota’s Car Accident Statute of Limitations Mean?
In Minnesota, you have two years from the date of the car accident to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party (Minnesota Statutes section 541.07). However, your claim must meet one of two requirements:
- Your medical expenses total more than $4,000
- You have been disabled for at least 60 days, or you have been permanently injured or disfigured
If one of the above prerequisites applies to your case, you are allowed by law to step outside of no-fault and file an injury liability claim, but only for the amounts not covered by your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance.
Once the statute of limitations has passed, you are barred from pursuing compensation from the at-fault party. Car accident claims take time to prepare. Some cases can be resolved through settlement agreements without ever going to trial (saving you time and money), but you will want to allow time for negotiations. To protect your right to compensation, you should begin working with a car accident attorney in Minneapolis as soon as possible.
Minnesota is a No-Fault Car Insurance State
When car accidents occur in Minnesota, each driver must use their own personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, regardless of who caused the collision. The statute of limitations does not apply to car insurance claims, and your policy will most likely contain a “Notice of Occurrence and Cooperation” clause. Meaning, that you agree to report an accident to your insurer and will cooperate with their investigation, even if no one was hurt (sometimes car accidents cause delayed injuries). If you take longer than six months to report an injury to your insurance provider, they may deny your benefits.
Notifying your insurance company immediately will not only speed up payments but can protect you if you decide to later bring a claim against the other driver. No-fault insurance benefits will pay for medical bills, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses, but do not cover pain and suffering damages.
In Minnesota, you are also required by law to file a report with Driver and Vehicle Services within 10 days of an accident, if a crash result in injury, death, or the total property damage is $1,000 or more. If law enforcement is called to the accident scene, they may fill out the report for you. If not, there are two options for reporting a crash. Fill out Minnesota Motor Vehicle Accident Report (PS32001) and deliver it:
Driver and Vehicle Services
445 Minnesota Street, Suite 181
St. Paul, MN 55101-5181
Request a form to be sent by mail at
DVS Records/Evaluation Counter
Town Square, St. Paul, MN 55101
Speak to an Experienced Car Accident Attorney About Your Injury Claim
At Hall Law P.A., we proudly serve car accident victims in Minneapolis, St. Cloud, and Edina. We bring decades of experience to the table and are dedicated to doing what it takes to get our clients the largest amount of compensation possible for their injuries. Call 800-292-1979 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation today