Disability Claims and Limitation Periods

Disability Claims and Limitation Periods

A limitation period is the amount of time the law permits an individual to bring an action, or “claim”, against another party in court.

Ontario’s Limitations Act, 2002 (the “Act”) defines a claim as “a claim to remedy an injury, loss or damage that occurred as a result of an act or omission.”

While the general rule is that an individual has two years from the date of injury, loss or damage to proceed with legal action, it is always best to speak with an experienced disability and injury lawyer to determine the actual date that the limitation period commences, as there are always exceptions to the rule.

For example, children and young adults under 18 years of age who have suffered an injury have two years from the date of their 18th birthday to pursue legal action.

If there are issues of mental incapacitation or memory loss, a limitation period may commence from the date that the loss or injury is “discovered” or fully realized by the plaintiff.

In disability claims, the limitation period does not commence until there is an explicit and unequivocal denial of benefits by the insurance carrier. If the claimant has used the insurance company’s appeal process to try to overturn the denial of benefits, this may also affect the date that the limitation period commences.

As these examples show, there are grey areas in statute law that only an experienced disability and personal injury lawyer can clarify for you. Remember: if the limitation period passes, your claim will be statute barred, meaning you will not be permitted to sue the insurance company for your benefits.

Don’t hesitate to book a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable lawyers to clarify these deadlines.