Injured victims only have a short timeframe to file a lawsuit. Due to the time-sensitive nature of personal injury claims, you should IMMEDIATELY contact a lawyer regarding your injury. Failure to file within this timeframe, also known as the statute of limitations, can bar you from ever recovering compensation for your injuries. For many personal injury actions in California, such as automobile accidents, you have two years from the date of your injury to file a lawsuit against the responsible parties. However, for certain claims, such as claims against government entities or medical malpractice, the statute of limitations is much shorter.