Kentucky Personal Injury Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations for personal injury & accidents in Kentucky is one (1) year (Ref: Ky. Rev. Stat. § 413.140). 


What this means is that you (or your attorney) must file a lawsuit against a defendant within one year of the date of your accident. If you do not file a lawsuit within one years, generally you forfeit any potential claim against the defendant as a matter of law - meaning there will be no opportunity for a settlement, arbitration or trial. 


Disclaimer: Although the information presented on this page is generally true there are some exceptions to this information, and the Kentucky Statute of Limitations (and the exceptions) may change over time. If you or a family member was involved in an accident and considering seeking compensation for your injuries it is crucial that you speak to an Kentucky personal injury lawyer to discuss your claim and potential recovery.

Variations on Time Limits for Filing a Lawsuit in Kentucky

There are some variations & exceptions to the 1 year statute of limitations on personal injury cases in Kentucky. Because of this, it is critical you discuss your matter with a lawyer who is highly experienced in personal injury law.


  • First, under Kentucky Revised Statutes section 413.170, if at the time of the underlying incident the injured person was "an infant or of unsound mind," meaning he or she was under 18 years of age or had been declared legally incapacitated, then the lawsuit may be filed within one year after the removal of the disability (meaning after the person turns 18 or is no longer incapacitated).
  • Next, under Kentucky Revised Statutes section 413.190, if the defendant is absent from the state of Kentucky at any point after the underlying accident, but before the lawsuit can be filed, or if the defendant takes steps to conceal him or herself within the state, the period of absence/concealment probably won't be counted as part of the one-year period (the statute of limitations "clock" will be paused during this time, in other words).

What if You Miss the Deadline to File a Lawsuit?

If you miss the deadline to file a lawsuit and the Kentucky statute of limitations passes (barring any exceptions), the opposing party will almost surely move for case dismissal and it will likely be granted. This also means that nearly any hope of a settlement will also be forfeited because there is no leverage to potentially pursue a trial (since it would immediately be dismissed). 

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