Originally published by highrank.
If you are injured in a personal injury case, you have a certain amount of time to file any legal actions to pursue compensation for your injuries. This time limit is referred to as a statute of limitations, which vary by region and state and the type of case.
However, some incidents cause injuries that do not obviously manifest for quite some time, and you may be experiencing complications from an incident that happened well beyond the statute of limitations for your situation. In cases such as this, the concept of “discovery of harm” exists to ensure victims can pursue legal actions against negligent entities even if the statute of limitations has come and gone.
The statute of limitations begins at varying times depending on circumstance. It may begin at the date of the incident for obvious injuries or when a judge decides that the victim should have been reasonably aware of the harm. The discovery of harm typically applies when the plaintiff becomes aware of the harm done. An example may be a seemingly harmless car accident in which no apparent injuries were suffered but a mild internal injury slowly became more painful and severe over time.
Delayed Discovery Rules
In cases like the above example, the plaintiff must rely on delayed discovery rules to pursue legal action if the statute of limitations has passed from the date of his or her incident. A few examples of when these rules apply include:
- Pharmaceutical or drug complications. Some people may have reactions from prescribed medications that are not immediately apparent. They may suffer internal damage over time that slowly becomes more severe and painful. They may also develop permanent complications or disabilities from medications that conflict with preexisting conditions, an allergy to the drugs, or have improper dosages.
- Sexual or psychological abuse cases. Some injuries leave long-lasting or permanent psychological damage on victims. Individuals who suffer sexual assaults or emotional and verbal abuse may not show signs of distress until a long time has passed since the initial incident. They may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, sleep disorders, or social problems.
- Increased susceptibility to further injury. Sometimes a slight injury can increase the victim’s susceptibility to more serious harm. An example may be a drug that diminishes the victim’s immune system, increasing his or her vulnerability to serious diseases or the inability to fully heal from injuries or fight off infection.
- Traumatic brain injuries. Some traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions, leave long-lasting effects on the victims even after the initial pain subsides. In the case of concussions, victims become more susceptible to subsequent concussions, and some of the side effects may not manifest for some time. This could include cluster headaches, chronic migraines, mood swings, or loss of vision or other senses.
In any type of personal injury case, the right attorney can make an enormous difference in your case’s outcome. Victims must prove that the defendant caused their injuries through some negligent action, which is often difficult to prove as time passes.
Start Your Claim With Expert Representation in Houston, Texas
The attorneys of Gordon, Elias & Seely are dedicated to thorough representation for all of our clients, regardless of injury. If another person or entity’s negligence caused you harm, you can seek compensation – no matter how long it has been since an incident resulted in injury. Reach out to our team of experts if you think you may be experiencing delayed effects from an injury or accident. Even if the statute of limitations has passed, you may seek compensation for injuries that were not immediately apparent.
from Texas Bar Today http://ift.tt/1UP2e32
via Abogado Aly Website