After a loved one dies unexpectedly, families need time to grieve and process their loss. The days, weeks, and months after the accident are often overwhelming, and it’s understandable that family members may not be ready to consider filing a legal claim.
However, many families want justice and to hold the person responsible for the death accountable. To do so, it is necessary to take action as soon as possible. The state of South Carolina has specific rules about how much time surviving family members have to file a wrongful death claim, known as the statute of limitations.
Understanding South Carolina’s Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations sets the amount of time accident victims have to file a legal claim, with different types of cases allowed varying amounts of time. For those in Myrtle Beach, the law allows three years from the date of the death to file a claim. After this time, the court will not allow the claim and families may be left with no recourse.
In certain rare situations, however, it is possible that the time limits would be extended. This is referred to as tolling the statute of limitations. For example, it could be the case that family members were not made aware of the cause of death or did not discover the involvement of another person until a significant amount of time had passed.
Families Need Time to Prepare a Claim
It’s important to get started as soon as possible when surviving family members are considering pursuing a wrongful death claim. While three years may seem like plenty of time, there are many factors to consider. It will be necessary to:
- Investigate the accident
- Obtain a police report
- Talk to witnesses
- Gather supporting documents
- Determine the value of the case
- Fill out legal forms
- File forms with the court by specific deadlines
This process can take time, and no family needs the additional stress the statute of limitations running out. When a loved one dies, family members deserve justice and compensation to help them address their changing needs.
Has Your Loved One Died To The Negligence Of Others?
If you're loved one has died due someone else's negligence you should speak to a wrongful death attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Charleston, South Carolina office directly at 843.488.2359 to schedule your consultation. We are also able to meet clients at our Conway, Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, Mt. Pleasant, North Myrtle Beach or North Charleston office locations.