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With any personal injury claim, there are important deadlines. We talk with many people every year who are unable to recover the compensation they deserve, because they waited too long to contact a lawyer. Statutes of limitation apply in all personal injury and wrongful death claims which limit the time you have to file a lawsuit on your claim. If you let the statute of limitations expire before a lawsuit is filed, you will lose all rights to prosecute your claim, and accordingly, all hope of obtaining compensation from the party(s) who caused your injuries.

Illinois Statute of Limitations Chart

Type of cause of action Time in which lawsuit must be filed from the date of accrual of cause of action (Generally, the date the injury occurs)
Personal injury (generally) 2 years
Personal injury to minors The Statute of limitations begins to run on the minor’s 18th birthday; then apply the Statute of Limitations for the type of claim involved
Oral contracts 5 years
Written contracts 10 years
Personal injury actions against the State Notice must be filed in the Court of Claims within 1 year and suit filed within 2 years
Dram Shop 1 year
Workers Compensation Notice to the employer of the accident within 45 days of the accident, and a petition filed with the Industrial Commission within 3 years
Action against school Notice filed within 6 months and suit filed within 1 year
Local public entity 1 year
Chicago Transit Authority Notice within 6 months and suit filed within 1 year
Wrongful death 2 years from the date of death

BEWARE – Statute of Limitations questions can many times be complicated. Therefore, these guidelines are not a substitute for legal research or a legal opinion. We recommend that you have any specific Statute of Limitations question carefully reviewed by an attorney.

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