A Potential Legal Pitfall: Personal injury claims against Georgia counties must be presented in writing to the county within 12 months after the injury date.
A recent Georgia Court of Appeals ruling made it clear that persons with potential personal injury claims against a county in the State of Georgia must present their claims in writing to the county in the manner prescribed by law within 12 months of the injury date. The statute of limitations or time limit for personal injury lawsuits in Georgia, barring exceptional circumstances, is 2 years after the injury. In the case recently decided, the injured party filed their personal injury case against the county more than 22 months after an automobile collision with a county police vehicle. The Court of Appeals ruled that the claims of the injured person expired when the time for providing the county written notice of the personal injury claim, which was 12 months, passed without the injured person giving the county proper written notice of their claim. It is true that the 2 year statute of limitations for filing a personal injury action applied to the case against the county, but the prerequisite for filing a personal injury lawsuit against a county is providing prior written notice of the claim in the manner prescribed by Georgia statute. The lesson to be learned for Georgia personal injury victims whose cases involve governmental agencies who caused the injury is to seek the counsel of an attorney at your earliest convenience. Special rules apply to cases against governmental entities. Please contact Rumsey & Ramsey at (770) 394-9400 to discuss your case with an attorney.