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Wrongful Death Statute of Limitation

Wrongful Death Statute of Limitation for Washington State

Plaintiffs must file suit within the time allotted or forever lose their rights

Your right to sue a negligent party for compensation is only good for a limited time, and once it’s gone, it’s gone forever. Since 1959, Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler PLLC has helped injured parties fight for the compensation they deserve. We have the experience to help safeguard your right to sue for damages so your claim is not barred by the statute of limitations or any other regulation governing Washington state court procedure.

What is the statute of limitations in Washington for wrongful death lawsuits?

The Revised Code of Washington does not specifically address wrongful death actions, but it addresses such cases in Section 4.16.080, which covers actions at law that are limited to three years. Section 4.16.080(2) reads:

“An action for taking, detaining, or injuring personal property, including an action for the specific recovery thereof, or for any other injury to the person or rights of another not hereinafter enumerated;” (emphasis added)

Wrongful death is an injury to the person who suffers the loss of a loved one.

Public policy justifies the imposition of a statute of limitations

It may seem harsh for a law to permanently bar an injured party from seeking compensation for losses, but the statute of limitations is necessary for several reasons:

  • It promotes a swift adjudication of legal claims — When plaintiffs understand they have a limited time to initiate legal action, the process begins in a timely fashion.
  • It promotes accuracy in the adjudication of claims — As time passes, the evidence necessary to get at the truth of a legal matter erodes. Memories fade, witnesses become unavailable and evidence is destroyed. Timely actions are more likely to produce accurate results.
  • It protects the due process rights of defendants — If there were no statute of limitations, the plaintiff would be in complete control of an action and could wait to bring suit until conditions favored the plaintiff, such as after the death of a key defense witness.

Contact our Tacoma wrongful death attorneys to start your legal action

If someone’s negligence has claimed the life of a loved one, you have a limited time in which to seek compensation. Talk to a seasoned trial attorney at Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler PLLC To schedule a free consultation and wrongful death case evaluation, call us at 253-383-5388 or contact our office online.

Are You a Victim of the MultiCare-Good Samaritan Hospital Hepatitis C Exposure?
Our firm is actively taking on representation of clients who were patients at MultieCare-Good Samaritan Hospital and were exposed to Hepatitis C and perhaps other diseases. We are investigating the actions of MultiCare and its employees as well as the MultiCare system itself that led to this crisis occurring.

If you have information about this incident, or previous incidences of MultiCare employees misusing narcotic medications intended for patients, or if you have legal questions about this matter and your rights, our lawyers are available to assist you at 253-383-5388.
Case Results
  • "Client was disabled from working in prior profession after sustaining a severe closed head injury and brain trauma in an automobile accident on Interstate 5. $7,845,000. "

  • "Pedestrian client was struck by semi-truck, and the trailer wheels rolled over client’s body causing severe injury. $1,145,000. "

  • "Client was involved in a head-on collision when a bus crossed the center line. Client suffered a severe closed head injury preventing him from returning to his previous employment. $884,998. "

  • "Client was involved in serious head-on collision with uninsured motorist while on-the-job, resulting in physical injury and posttraumatic stress disorder. Client can no longer work as a commercial truck driver. $708,000. "

  • "Client was a rear seat passenger in a vehicle that was involved in an automobile accident. Client was severely injured as the result of a defective seatbelt, while the other three occupants of the vehicle sustained only minor injuries. $650,000. "

  • "Client was killed in automobile accident caused by defendant’s failure to yield the right-of-way. $650,000. "

  • "Minor client was on his way to school and was struck by a vehicle while crossing the street in a marked crosswalk. Defendant driver had pulled into oncoming lane to pass another vehicle and struck client, causing serious injuries. $500,000. "

  • "Client was killed as a result of an in-cab fuel tank, which caught fire after an automobile accident. $350,000. "

  • "Client riding a bicycle was struck by a motorist who failed to yield the right-of-way. Client sustained numerous injuries, including a closed head injury. $120,000. "

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  • "I have been a client of Dan Kyler’s since 1996. Having had numerous car accidents, I rely upon Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler to help me through them. The most obscure questions have been answered and help is given on all levels. Thanks."

  • "John Wilson demonstrated his professionalism by keeping us current on our case, explaining our options, giving us realistic expectations and demonstrating the highest level of ethics and integrity beyond reproach. We have the highest confidence that we were well represented."

  • "Dan Hannula’s hard work helped to settle my auto accident case. "

  • "Having a motorcycle accident was bad enough, let alone dealing with insurance companies. John Wilson and his staff made everything easy to understand and hassle free. "

  • "I am extremely satisfied with the service I experienced with this firm and I would recommend them to anyone that needs legal representation. Michael Fisher and his staff are great people. "

  • "Vern Harkins perseverance and hard work made it possible to get the maximum settlement from the insurance company. I know he had my interest in mind as demonstrated by his actions. "

  • "The office staff were courteous, pleasant and kept me informed as to what was going on throughout the whole ordeal. "

  • "Molly Crowley is a very professional and knowledgeable lawyer. I felt I was very well represented!! "

  • "Molly Crowley was knowledgeable, kept me informed every step of the way and just did a great job! "

  • "We got a fair settlement and were treated with respect and dignity throughout the whole process. -Blake W. "

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