What are statutes of limitations? A statute is a common law legal system that sets forth the maximum time period after certain events such as a wrongful death that legal proceedings may be initiated.
What is Utah’s statute of limitations?
- Negligence – 2 years
- Medical Malpractice – providers = must file within 2 yrs. from date of injury or from date that injury was or should have been discovered; may not file more than 4 yrs. from date of injury; (applies to minors under 18). Actions based on insertion of foreign object = must file within 2 yrs. of insertion of object or 2 yrs. from date of discovery or should have discovered foreign object; applies to minors under 18.
- Product Liability – 2yrs after suffering injury or date injury was or should’ve been found
- Wrongful Death – 2 years after date of death
- Survival – 2 years after suffering injury
Caps on Attorney Awards: Contingency fee not to exceed 1/3 of award
Caps on Damages – Utah Statute of Limitations Laws
Medical Malpractice – § 78-14-7.1. Limitation of award of noneconomic damages in malpractice actions
(1) In a malpractice action against a health care provider, an injured plaintiff may recover noneconomic losses to compensate for pain, suffering, and inconvenience. The amount of damages awarded for noneconomic loss may not exceed:
(a) for a cause of action arising before July 1, 2001, $ 250,000;
(b) for a cause of action arising on or after July 1, 2001 and before July 1, 2002, the limitation is adjusted for inflation to $ 400,000; and
(c) for a cause of action arising on or after July 1, 2002, the $ 400,000 limitation described in Subsection (1)(b) shall be adjusted for inflation as provided in Subsection (2).
(2) (a) Beginning July 1, 2002 and each July 1 thereafter, the limit for damages under Subsection (1)(c) shall be adjusted for inflation by the state treasurer.
(b) By July 15 of each year, the state treasurer shall:
(i) certify the inflation-adjusted limit calculated under this Subsection (2); and
(ii) inform the Administrative Office of the Courts of the certified limit.
(c) The amount resulting from Subsection (2)(a) shall:
(i) be rounded to the nearest $ 10,000; and
(ii) apply to a cause of action arising on or after the date the annual adjustment is made.
(3) As used in this section, "inflation" means the seasonally adjusted consumer price index for all urban consumers as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor.
(4) The limit under Subsection (1) does not apply to awards of punitive damages
Product Liability – $250,000 limitation on noneconomic damages
Pharmaceutical cases – $250,000 limitation on noneconomic damages
Special Rules for Utah Minors (minors tolling) - Except in cases of medical malpractice or wrongful death, the statute of limitations begins to run on the minor’s 18th birthday
Utah Trial Lawyers Association
645 South 200 East, #103
Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Utah State Police
4501 South 2700 West
PO Box 141775
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-1775