Statutes of Limitation (sol) serve to limit the time in which a claim can be brought. They bar claims that are not filed within the time the law allows for that particular claim. The sol vary from state to state and within a state they vary based on the nature of the claim. For instance, some states have sol of only one year for personal injury claims. Florida has a four year limitations period for most personal injury claims (excluding medical malpractice). The limitations periods in Florida can be found at Florida Statutes section 95.11. A brief and limited summary of sol in the various states should be referenced if you have a potential claim. The major limitations periods in Florida briefly summarized are:
4 years Strict Products Liability
4 years Negligence
4 years Personal Injury
5 years Contracts-Written
4 years Contracts-Oral
4 years Property Damage
If you have a legal claim you should get legal advice immediately because the periods above are just summaries and have exceptions and can vary depending on the circumstances. Examples in Florida of complicated limitations periods include medical malpractice which even in a summary is convoluted and lengthy sol: 2 years for medical malpractice (from the date of notice with an absolute 4 year limit even without notice with exceptions for minors). To complicate things even more, there are often special rules in cases involving minors, and some claims (like if you want to sue a state governmental entity in Florida) require victims to give advance notice of their intent to sue.
Because the exact calculation of a sol is actually pretty complicated, I suggest you contact a lawyer. Most will provide an opinion as a free consultation in a personal injury matter. If you have a question about a sol involving your claim, contact an Injury Board affiliated lawyer in your area.