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Oklahoma Personal Injury Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations for personal injury & accidents in Oklahoma is two (2) years (Ref: Okla. Stat. tit. 12, § 95). 

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

Variations on Time Limits for Filing a Lawsuit in Oklahoma

There are some variations & exceptions to the 2 years statute of limitations on personal injury cases in Oklahoma. Because of this, it is critical you discuss your matter with a lawyer who is highly experienced in personal injury law. 

  • Special rules usually apply if, at the time of the underlying accident, the injured person is under any "legal disability." That could mean he or she is a minor (under the age of 18 in Oklahoma), or it could mean the injured person is incapacitated in the eyes of the law (having been declared mentally incompetent or not "of sound mind," by a court or other authority, for example). 
  • If the injured person is under a legal disability, once the period of disability ends -- meaning the person turns 18 or is declared legally competent, sticking with the above examples -- he or she will have one year to get the lawsuit filed, according to Oklahoma Statutes section 12-96.
  • Another potential extension to the statute of limitations deadline: When the defendant (the person who is alleged to have caused the injury) "leaves the state or conceals himself" in the state before a lawsuit can be filed, the period of absence or concealment probably won't be counted as part of the time limit for filing suit. 

What if You Miss the Deadline to File a Lawsuit?

If you miss the deadline to file a lawsuit and the Oklahoma 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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