What is the Colorado statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim?

The Colorado statute of limitations for wrongful death is two years. This could mean two years from the actual death or two years from the time the cause of death is discovered. Despite the two-year period provided, make sure that the claim is filed as soon as possible to be sure everything happens on time. Contact a personal injury attorney in Arvada for help dealing with the claims process.

What to Know About Statute of Limitations

As mentioned, the statute of limitations in Colorado for cases of wrongful death is two years. But the statute of limitations varies by state. Most states give the survivors of wrongful death victims two or three years to file a claim. It is important to know that the statute of limitations for other types of legal matters, such as debt, property damage and contracts, vary significantly. If you have any doubt about how long you have to file a claim, contact a lawyer.

Exceptions to the Colorado Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death

In some cases, the two-year time limit may be extended. This often occurs when the exact cause of death is unknown at the time of the accident. For example, a family may believe that their loved one died from natural causes when in fact he or she passed because of medical malpractice or murder. In these cases, the Colorado statute of limitations for wrongful death would not begin until the evidence is discovered.

This is called the discovery rule and it can actually be quite complicated. Contact a personal injury attorney in Arvada to ensure that your claim is still filed within with the time limits. Once the time limit has passed, there are very few exceptions in which the courts rule it valid.

Causes of Wrongful Death

When many people think of wrongful death, they may think of medical malpractice and defective drugs. However, accidents are one of the leading causes of wrongful death. Traffic accidents are a common cause, with many attributed to drunk driving, a form of negligence. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 31 percent of traffic accident fatalities in 2010 were caused by drunk driving.

Also possible causes of wrongful death:

  • bus accidents;
  • boating accidents; and
  • drowning.

Types of Damages You Could Receive

A lawyer can help the surviving family members of a wrongful death victim recover compensation for various damages:

  • financial damages, such as medical expenses, funeral costs and any pain and suffering the victim endured before his or her death;
  • loss of companionship;
  • loss of support; and
  • loss of wages.

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in Arvada

If your loved one died from the negligence of another person, contact an attorney. Contact us today at (303) 300-5060. Also be sure to check out our freeguide that discusses seven mistakes that may ruin your claim. D.J. Banovitz, Personal Injury Law, can help with the claims process and can help to ensure that you file your claim wit hin Colorado’s statute of limitations for wrongful death cases.