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The statute of limitations is a law which places a specific time limit on pursuing a legal remedy in response to wrongful conduct. Unless a legal exception applies, after the expiration of the statutory period the injured party loses their right to file a lawsuit seeking money damages or other relief.

Indeed, like all other lawsuits, Illinois personal injury cases do have a time limit which is set by a statute of limitations. In most personal injury cases, the time period covered by the statute of limitations begins on the date or the injury’s occurrence.


While the statute of limitations seems like a simple concept, it is not always as straightforward as it seems. Here’s why:

  • If you discover a medical injury outside the statute of limitations, the discovery rule may apply and extend the period that you are able to collect damages.
  • On the other hand, tolling the statute of limitations benefits the victim by stopping (tolling) the time period allowed.
  • The time period covered by the statute of limitations is different for each state and every singular offense.
  • Even so, the statute of limitations for negligence/personal injury in Illinois is 2 years with the Modified Discovery Rule, which states that parties knew or should have known injury was wrongfully caused even if plaintiff did not know it was actionable.
  • For example, if you were struck and injured in a vehicle accident on June 14, 2010, you typically have until June 14, 2012 to file a personal injury suit and work to recover damages against those responsible for the injury. However, as in many areas of the law, many exceptions may apply.

There are nuances and clauses to the statute of limitations, so injured parties should seek the assistance of an experienced Chicago Personal Injury Attorney. Personal injury lawyers battle tested and very knowledgeable in the statute of limitations a applied to an assortment of personal injury suits. It is critical to contact them as close to the date of the injury or offense as possible to ensure that you are able to begin legal proceedings in order to ensure that you adhere to timeline requirements and receive just compensation.


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  • Steven Malman was selected to the list. The list is issued by the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys. A description of the selection methodology can be found at

  • Steven Malman was selected to the list for 2018-2019.

  • Only the top 100 trial lawyers from each state or highly-populated regions of certain states who are actively practicing in civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense law are eligible for invitation. Invitees must demonstrate superior qualifications, leadership skills, and trial results as a legal professional. The selection process for this elite honor is based on a multi-phase process based upon objective and uniformly applied criteria which includes peer nominations combined with third party research.

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