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What Are The Time Limits To Bring A Lawsuit In New York?

New York has different time limits or “statute of limitations” for different types of claims. It is important to understand your type of claim as well as the identity of the responsible party. Government/public entities have their own separate and distinct time limits and other special requirements which are discussed in more detail on our NYC Municipal Negligence page.

Here are the time limits for the most common types of claims:


If you are injured in New York, you have three years to bring a claim for injuries arising out of someone’s negligence.

Intentional Conduct

For injuries arising out of someone’s intentional act like an assault and battery, you have only one year from the date of the incident.

Medical Malpractice

In general, an action for medical, dental or podiatric malpractice must be filed within two and a half years from the date the malpractice occurred. However, there are some exceptions and rules that may change when your time begins to run.

If your case fits into the continuous treatment exception, the time starts to run from the date your treatment ended if you were receiving ongoing treatment for the condition related to the malpractice.

In a failure to diagnose cancer case, the deadline to file an action is two and one half years from the date the patient discovers the misdiagnosis. However, the law sets an outer limit of seven years from the date of the missed diagnosis.

If a surgeon left a foreign object inside your body, you have one year from the date of the discovery of, or when you should have reasonably discovered, the foreign object in your body, whichever is earlier.

Wrongful Death

The statute of limitations in New York to bring a wrongful death claim is two years from the date of death. For a survivorship claim for pre-death conscious pain and suffering, the claim must be filed within three years from the date of the injury which caused the death or one year after the death, whichever is later.

Do Not Delay in Contacting a Lawyer About Your Case

If you are unsure of the time limits for your specific case, please contact us and we will be glad to explain the law applicable to your case. As these time limits can be confusing, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible after an injury so your rights are protected.