Statutes of Limitations

The statute of limitations is the time period that the law allows for asserting a claim. If a claim is not brought within the time period allowed by the statute of limitations, it will be barred. This means that even if you have a clear cut case against someone arising out of an automobile accident, the court will dismiss your claim if you do not file it within the time period allowed by the statute of limitations. Once a claim is barred by the statute of limitations, there is no chance of resurrecting it.

Not knowing the specific time period in which to bring a claim is not an excuse.

Statutes of Limitations – Illinois

Type of cause of actionTime in which lawsuit must be filed from the date of the accident
Personal injury (generally)2 years
Personal injury to minorsThe statute of limitations begins to run on the minor’s 18th birthday; then apply the Statute of Limitations for the type of claim involved.
Personal injury actions against the StateNotice must be filed in the Court of Claims within 1 year and suit filed within 2 years
Dram Shop1 year
Action agains schoolNotice filed within 6 month and suit filed within 1 year
Local public entity1 year
Chicago Transit AuthorityNotice within 6 months and suit filed within 1 year
Wrongful death2 years from the date of death

Statute of Limitations questions can many times be complicated. Therefore, these guidelines are not a substitute for legal research or a legal opinion. We recommend that you have any specific Statute of Limitations question carefully reviewed by an experienced personal injury attorney.

To ensure that your legal rights are protected and you receive maximum compensation for your auto accident injuries, call 800-437-2571 anytime for a free, no obligation Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney or use our convenient Confidential Contact Form.

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Thank you for your patience and consideration. Be safe and stay healthy!


Donald Fohrman
Donald W. Fohrman & Associates, Ltd.