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How Long After an Accident Can You Sue in Canada?

How Long After an Accident Can You Sue in Canada Featured Image

How Long After an Accident Can You Sue in Canada?

If you or your loved one is in agony due to someone else’s carelessness, you may be enraged and want to file a lawsuit immediately. However, medical emergencies may make it difficult for you to approach legal action.

So, as each day passes, the concern of how long after an accident you can sue in Canada persists in your mind.

To answer the query, provided you have sufficient proof, there is no precise time limit in Canada for suing the perpetrator of your case. Experienced personal injury lawyers advise filing a lawsuit within two years of the accident. However, laws vary by province.

Let’s know in detail.

How Long After an Accident Can You Sue in Canada?

You have around two years from the accident date to file a claim seeking damages from the responsible party. This also relies on your circumstances. The lawyer will need time to fully investigate the situation. It will get more difficult to resolve the issue as you do more delays. So, move quickly.

What is the Limitation Countdown in Canada?

The period within which you have to file a lawsuit or claim for compensation is known as the limitation countdown.

All over Canada, the limitation countdown starts from the day an accident occurs. In Ontario, the limitation period is about two years. That means you must file a lawsuit within 2 years since the accident happened. However, there is some exception.

  • Negligence of the municipal or any authority is present in an accident. You have to report the case to send the municipal a notice about the claim within 10 days of the accident.
  • In case of injury due to medical negligence, you can file the lawsuit any time you want. The reason behind this exception is that you may not be able to find the injury right after receiving medical treatment. So, there is no limitation period for a medical injury case.
  • In cases regarding physical abuse, sexual abuse, or violence, the victim can choose when to file a case against the perpetrator. The court will consider the case because the victim may not be in a sound condition to fight a case against the person at fault.

How Long After an Accident Can You Make a Claim?

If you reside in Ontario, the law allows you to file a claim within 2 years of the accident. But there are certain cases where you need to take immediate action and claim your compensation within a specific time limit.

Motor vehicle accident:

You must follow the timelines below to build your case successfully in a motor vehicle accident.

  • Send a notice to your insurer claiming your compensation within 7 days of the accident.
  • Complete the formalities for the application within 30 days.
  • If your insurer denies the application, sue the company within 2 years.
  • Notify the at-fault driver right after the accident. It is better not to delay more than 120 days.
  • File the lawsuit against the at-fault driver for the damages to your vehicle.
  • If the accident caused severe and lifetime physical injury or death, the victim’s relatives are allowed to fight for the lawsuit. They will also have 2 years to file a case.

So, do not waste too much time wondering when I can sue the person who hit my car. Instead, follow the timeline to report the case with the help of a lawyer as early as possible.

Nevertheless, after 15 years of the accident, suing the person at-fault will not be acceptable in the court.

Suing a company for car accident:

If a company car crashes your car, you are allowed to sue both the driver (employee) and the company (employer). The time limit to claim your compensation is 2 years.

Slip and fall Injury:

  • You will have 21 days to sue the authority responsible for poor maintenance of the road in winter if you are injured in a slip and fall case in Alberta.
  • In Nunavut, the time limit is 30 days.
  • In Ontario, you must send a prior notice within 10 days of the fall to preserve a chance to sue the municipal in a 2-year timeline.

Hit and run driver:

  • The Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund gives you 90 days to submit the plea of an accident case of hit and run.
  • You will have to submit the application stating the severity of your injury, the damages to your vehicle, and photos as shreds of evidence.

As you can see, the days vary with every case; it would be better to consult a personal injury lawyer before filing a case against the guilty party.

Can You Sue Someone for Lying About a Car Accident?

Sometimes, the other car driver responsible for the car accident lies about his fault to deny the charges you made against him. After an accident occurs, the drivers usually leave the situation as it is for the police to arrive and investigate.

You will not know what the other driver is stating in the report because the police will talk to you separately. You will only know about the lie when you read the police report. And yes, if you think the driver is lying, you can file a lawsuit.

In a situation like this, the police and the insurer consider that both parties are telling the truth. Suing someone for lying about the car accident will help you eventually.

Lying under oath in front of the jury will lead you to a fine or serving a particular time in jail. The other party may agree to settle the claim outside the court to avoid the conclusions. And while the trial continues, possibilities are open that the other driver will tell you the truth.

How Much Can Someone Sue for a Car Accident?

Experts in this field recommend consulting a lawyer to file a lawsuit because it is hard to calculate the amount of money a victim should ask for from the responsible driver of the accident.

The lawyer often accumulates all the expenses, both medical and car damages, and multiplies it with the intensity of the injury and damages. However, the amount of money may range from thousands to millions.

In Ontario, the small claims court will handle cases where the maximum amount is 35,000 dollars.

What Will Help to Make a Strong Case?

You should hire a lawyer after the accident immediately to start the preparation for the trial. You have to fight against the insurance company also in this state of the case.

The tips in below can support you to make to case more strong to prove:

Arrange the Proper Proof

At the beginning of the suing process, you have to arrange many written documents. So hiring a lawyer will be much more beneficial for you to gather the documents easily. A lawyer can easily go through witnesses, videos, medical history, and pictures.

Finalization of the Claim value

An injured person can hardly deal with the claiming and suing process for the lack of physical and mental energy. In this state, a lawyer can find the best claim value for you as you deserve.

Filing the Case

In general, after 2 years anyone can’t claim or sue for any injury case. So, the best option is to hire an experienced lawyer for starting the case during your treatment. The lawyer can collect the proof on behalf of you to submit those to the court on time.

Dealing with the Negotiation Process

After the accident you have to give some time to yourself to recover the pain and suffering, during this time you can’t run for the claiming amount. But if you hire a lawyer and say the details to him, he will start working on your case and will negotiate for you to get the best price in the settlement.

Start Trail for Case

 If clients feel, they will deserve more amount for claim. That time hiring a lawyer is the best option before filing a lawsuit in court.

What Will Happen If You Wait for Too Long?

Your health comes first when you are injured after a car accident. At the same time, you need to understand how long after an accident you can sue in Canada, so you do not lose a winning case. Here are why you should take action immediately after regaining your health.

  • Your insurance company may have given you insufficient money to recover and repair the damage. If you wait too long to take action, you may lose the chance to claim the money you deserve as the policy and sue your insurer.
  • With every passing day, the evidence of the accident can fade. The witnesses will forget what they saw, or your injury may recover with time. Moreover, the site where the accident occurred may be cleaned out of any evidence, and the camera footage or photos may have been misplaced or lost – many things can happen if you wait too long.
  • The defending lawyer will have enough time to prepare the case against you. And they may accuse you of being the responsible one for the accident.

Can Anyone Else File a Claim on My Behalf?

In unfortunate cases, relatives, friends, or close ones can file a lawsuit. A litigation guardian must also follow the time limit according to the abovementioned cases. They can file on behalf of the victim only when-

  • The victim is dead on the spot of the accident
  • The victim is dead after suffering due to the accident
  • Inability to report to the police physically and mentally
  • The victim remained unconscious for a long time after the accident
  • The victim is underaged or has lost a normal mental state and suffering from memory loss.


Now that you know the answer to how long after an accident you can sue in Canada, it’s a good idea to put your health first. When you want to push the case a few days ahead, ask the support of a friend or relative to contact a qualified personal injury lawyer.

A lawyer helps you find a claim even when you cannot figure out any potential claim. Therefore, hiring a lawyer will help you win the lawsuit with strategically planned, organized evidence and sufficient legal knowledge. And often, the other party will try to settle the case with compensations outside the court. So take decisions wisely.


Can you sue for a car accident in Canada?

You will be able to sue someone for a car accident only when they are the at-fault party and you have enough pieces of evidence to present to the court. In Canada, every province has specific laws for fault determination.

So, if you suffer a lifelong disability for another driver’s fault, you can sue him for the mental pain, suffering, and physical loss.

How long after an accident can I claim?

It will help if you claim an accident as early as possible after a car accident. You should contact your insurance company within 7 days, claim for your compensation from the at-fault party within 30 days, and notify the municipality of your claim within 10 days of the accident.

Is there a time frame to make an insurance claim?

No, there is no specific time frame to make an insurance claim. However, it is better to notify your insurer within 7 days of your accident. Notifying them is crucial as you will have sufficient evidence that the accident wasn’t intentional and you are not at fault.