North Dakota Personal Injury Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations for personal injury & accidents in North Dakota is six (6) years (Ref: N.D. Cent. Code § 28-01-16). 


What this means is that you (or your attorney) must file a lawsuit against a defendant within six years of the date of your accident. If you do not file a lawsuit within six 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 North Dakota 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 a North Dakota personal injury lawyer to discuss your claim and potential recovery.

Variations on Time Limits for Filing a Lawsuit in North Dakota

There are some variations & exceptions to the 6 years statute of limitations on personal injury cases in North Dakota. Because of this, it is critical you discuss your matter with a lawyer who is highly experienced in personal injury law. 


  • Caps on Injury Damages: Like several states, North Dakota has laws that "cap," or limit,  damages in personal injury cases. North Dakota places a cap of $500,000 on non-economic damages (also known as "pain and suffering" damages) in medical malpractice cases. In addition, any economic damages over $250,000 may be reviewed by the court to determine if they are "reasonable." Remember, this cap does not apply to all injury cases in North Dakota, only those stemming from medical malpractice. 
  • Owner Liability For Injury by a Dog or Other Animal: There is no specific statute in North Dakota governing personal injury liability for dog bites. Owners will be held liable for injuries caused by their dog (or other animals) if the injured party can show that the owner “should have known” the animal was dangerous. This is known as the “one bite” rule
  • North Dakota Injuries Involving the Government: Some injuries or accidents involve the potential liability of a government employee or agency. When a case involves the government in North Dakota, it follows a special set of rules. To file an injury claim against the government in North Dakota, you have 180 days to give notice to the state's Risk Management Fund. You can learn more about injury claims that involve the government in our Injury Claims Against the Government section.

What if You Miss the Deadline to File a Lawsuit?

If you miss the deadline to file a lawsuit and the North Dakota 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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