In Nevada, there is a limited period of time in which you can sue someone. This period is known as the “statute of limitations” or "limitations period."1
In most personal injury cases in Nevada, the statute of limitations is 2 years. The statute of limitations usually begins to run (“accrues”) when you discover the injury or when, in the exercise of reasonable prudence, you should have done so.
If the statute of limitations expires and no lawsuit has been filed, you will usually lose your right to sue for damages arising from that wrongdoing or injury.
However, some types of injuries have a longer or shorter statute of limitations in Nevada. Additionally, there are a number of circumstances in which a Nevada statute of limitations doesn't start to run immediately, or when it is “tolled” (suspended).
To help you better understand Nevada laws on the statute of limitations, our Las Vegas personal injury lawyers discuss the following, below.
- 1. How long is the statute of limitations in Nevada?
- 2. Causes of action with a longer or shorter statute of limitations
- 3. When is the statute of limitations “tolled” in Nevada?
- 4. Can I do anything if the statute of limitations has expired?
Most causes of action in Nevada personal injury cases have a 2-year statute of limitations.
The statute of limitations usually does not start to run, however, until you knew or should have known of the injury.
This is important as some injuries do not manifest themselves until long after the date on which the wrongful act occurred.
For instance, mesothelioma (asbestos poisoning) injuries often do not show up for many decades after exposure to asbestos. In such cases it is common for lawsuits to be filed years -- or even decades -- after the harm occurred.
Common causes of action that have a 2-year statute of limitations in Nevada include:
- Defamation (slander or libel),
- False imprisonment (civil),
- Assault and battery (civil), and
- Wrongful death.2
There are many injury claims that have a statute of limitations longer (or in some cases shorter) than two years in Nevada. Some of the most common are:
- Injury or wrongful death caused by a construction defect – 6 years.3
- Legal malpractice or veterinary malpractice – the earlier of:
- 4 years after the plaintiff sustains damage, or
- 2 years after the plaintiff discovers or through the use of reasonable diligence should have discovered the material facts which constitute the cause of action.4
- Sexual abuse of a minor – 10 years from the later of:
- The plaintiff turning 18, or
- When the plaintiff discovers or reasonably should have discovered that his or her injury was caused by the sexual abuse.5
- Pornography involving a minor – the later of:
- The court entering a verdict in a related criminal case; or
- The victim turning 18.6
- Medical malpractice occurring after 2002 -- the earlier of:
- 3 years after the date of injury, or
- 1 year after the plaintiff discovers, or through the use of reasonable diligence should have discovered, the injury.7
- Accounting malpractice – the earliest of:
- 2 years after the date on which the alleged act, error or omission is discovered or should have been discovered through the use of reasonable diligence;
- 4 years after completion of performance of the service for which the action is brought; or
- 4 years after the date of the initial issuance of the report prepared by the accountant or accounting firm regarding the financial statements or other information.8
- Product liability -- 4 years.9
- Property damage -- 3 years.10
- Fraud – 3 years from discovery of the facts constituting the fraud.11
In certain cases, a Nevada statute of limitations may be tolled or may start accruing later than usual. That is, the running of the statute of limitations may be suspended for a while – a sort of legal “time-out.”
Common reasons why the statute of limitations may be tolled in Nevada include:
- Serious medical malpractice involving a minor child -- the statute of limitations is extended until:
- In the case of brain damage of a child or a birth defect, until the child turns 10;12 or
- In the case of sterility, until 2 years after the child discovers the injury.13
- Legal, veterinary or accounting malpractice – the period of time during which an attorney or veterinarian conceals any act, error or omission upon which the action is founded and which is known -- or through the use of reasonable diligence should have been known – by the defendant.14
- The defendant is out-of-state – statute of limitations does not run while the defendant is not in Nevada;15
- Death of the injured party -- if the cause of action is one that survives a person's death and the statute of limitations has not yet expired, the person's executor or representatives usually have one year after the person's death to file a suit.16
- Party is a citizen of a country the U.S. is at war with -- statute of limitations is tolled during continuance of the war.17
- Reversal of judgment – any new action must be commenced within one year of the reversal.18
Before concluding that too much time has passed to file your lawsuit in Nevada, it is a good idea to check with an experienced Las Vegas personal injury attorney.
You are not necessarily out of luck if the Nevada statute of limitations has expired.
An experienced Las Vegas injury lawyer will look to see if there may be another statute or legal theory under which you can bring suit.
For instance, if the defendant's duty of care arose under the terms of a contract, you may have more time to file suit. The Nevada statute of limitations for breach of a written contract is 6 years.19 Breach of a verbal contract has a 4-year statute of limitations in Nevada.20
Additionally, if fraud or a reasonable mistake kept you from discovering the facts in your case, you may be legally entitled to extra time to file suit in Nevada.
It is important to consult an experienced Las Vegas or Reno personal injury lawyer in order to determine whether your right to sue has expired.
Injured in Las Vegas or Reno? Call us for help…
If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident or by a dangerous product or wrongful act in Las Vegas or Reno, we invite you to contact us for a free consultation.
Our caring Las Vegas injury and accident attorneys will go over all the facts of your case to help you determine whether you have a valid case and how much you may be able to recover.
To schedule your free consultation, either complete the form on this page or call us at 702-DEFENSE (333-3673).
Don't assume your time to file has run out until you talk to us. In many cases, we can still help.
- NRS 11.010.
- NRS 11.190.
- NRS 11.202.
- NRS 11.207(1).
- NRS 11.215(1).
- NRS 11.215 (2); See also NRS 41.1396.
- NRS 41A.097(2).
- NRS 11.2075 (1).
- NRS 11.220.
- NRS 11.190(3).
- NRS 11.190(3)(d).
- NRS 41A.097(4)(a).
- NRS 41A.097(4)(b).
- NRS 11.207 (2); NRS 11.2075 (2).
- NRS 11.300.
- NRS 11.310.
- NRS 11.330.
- NRS 11.340.
- NRS 11.190 (1).
- NRS 11.190 (2).