Understanding Georgia’s Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims

Understanding the statute of limitations is necessary for anyone considering a personal injury claim in Georgia.

However, missing the deadline can significantly hinder your ability to seek compensation.

Judge Gavel

What Is the Statute of Limitations?

The statute of limitations is a law that sets a deadline for starting legal action after an event occurs.

In Georgia, for personal injury claims, this deadline is mostly two years from the day you were injured or discovered the injury.

The main goal of this law is to make sure cases are filed while the evidence is still fresh and to give a sense of finality to those who might be sued.

Here’s a quick look at how long you might have to file a personal injury lawsuit in Georgia:

Type of AccidentStatute of LimitationsGeorgia Code
Assault2 years§9-3-33
Auto Accidents2 years§9-3-33
Wrongful Death2 years§9-3-33
Property Damage4 years§9-3-33
Premises Liability2 years§9-3-33
Loss of Consortium4 years§9-3-33
Product Liability2 years§ 51-1-11
Medical Malpractice2 years§ 9-3-71
Workers’ Compensation4 years§ 34-9-82

Consequences of Missing the Deadline

You could lose your right to seek compensation if you don’t file your personal injury claim within the statute of limitations.

After the deadline passes, the court will usually dismiss your case unless there are special circumstances.

There are limited exceptions where the statute may be tolled, paused, or differ from the two-year rule:


If fraud was involved in the incident or the handling of the claim, the statute of limitations may be extended beyond the standard two-year period.

Examples of fraudulent activities include:

  1. Concealment of Evidence: If someone intentionally hides or destroys evidence related to your injury claim.
  2. Misrepresentation: If false information was provided to insurance companies or in court proceedings regarding the incident.
  3. Forgery: If signatures or documents were forged to manipulate the outcome of your claim.

Minors as Plaintiffs

If the person injured was a minor (under 18 years old) at the time of the injury, the statute of limitations may be “tolled,” or paused, until they reach legal adulthood.

Limitations for Personal Injury Claims

This means the countdown for the two-year limit starts when they turn 18.

Defendant Absence from the State

If the defendant you want to sue is not present in Georgia when you have to file a claim, the statute of limitations may be extended.

For example, if the defendant is temporarily residing in another state for work or travel purposes, the statute of limitations might be paused until they return to Georgia.

Accidents Involving Government Property or Vehicles

Accidents involving government-owned property or vehicles may have different rules and timelines for filing claims compared to standard personal injury cases.

For instance, claims against government entities often require specific procedures such as filing notices within a shorter timeframe than typical personal injury claims.

It’s important to consult with an injury attorney experienced in handling such cases to understand the specific requirements and deadlines.


It’s important to deal with a personal injury case promptly to protect your legal rights.

For most claims, you have a two-year deadline, known as the statute of limitations.

Talking to a lawyer early on can boost your chances of a positive outcome.

This strategy helps you navigate the legal process well and seek the compensation you’re entitled to.

Chelsea Wilson

About Chelsea Wilson

Chelsea Wilson is the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s distance learning LLM degree program, which provides foreign trained attorneys with the opportunity to earn a Master of Laws degree from a top-tier American university from anywhere in the world.

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