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California Civil Statute of Limitations Laws

In every state, there are time limits for the filing of lawsuits and other civil actions called "statutes of limitations." California's civil statute of limitations laws are not too different from those of other states. Depending on the type of case or procedure, California's statutes of limitations range from one year to 10 years. The point at which the clock starts ticking typically is the date of the incident or discovery of a wrong.

Below is a summary of civil statutes of limitations in California. See Details on State Civil Statute of Limitations and Time Limits to Bring a Case: The Statute of Limitations to learn more.

Injury to Person Personal injury: 2 yrs. Civ. Proc. §335.1; False imprisonment: 1 yr. Civ. Proc. §340(c)
Libel/Slander 1 yr. Civ. Proc. §340(c)
Fraud 3 yrs. Civ. Proc. §338(d)
Injury to Personal Property 3 yrs. Civ. Proc. §338(b), (c)
Professional Malpractice Legal: 1 yr. from discovery, max. of 4 yrs. from the wrong Civ. Proc. §340.6; Medical: 1 yr. from discovery, 3 yrs. if injury known Civ. Proc. §340.5; Vet.: 1 yr. for injury or death of animal Civ. Prop. §340(c)
Trespass 3 yrs. Civ. Proc. §338(b)
Collection of Rents 4 yrs. Civ. Proc. §337.2
Contracts Written: 4 yrs. §337; Oral: 2 yrs. Civ. Proc. §339
Collection of Debt on Account 4 yrs. (book and stated accounts) Civ. Proc. §337
Judgments 10 yrs. Civ. Proc. §337.5

Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a California personal injury lawyer or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

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