Louisiana’s Statute of Limitations on Property Damage

Posted on April 2, 2023


Long Nguyen | author

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ICHQ | Site Author

Have you noticed damage to your home? If the damage may have been the result of weather or human activity, you likely want it fixed as quickly as possible. Is there a time limit to file a homeowners insurance claim in Louisiana? As you prepare your claim, you should understand the Louisiana statute of limitations on property damage. Our home insurance claim attorneys at Insurance Claim HQ explain how to get your claim filed on time.

What Is Louisiana’s Statute of Limitations on Property Damage?

The Louisiana statute of limitations on property damage is one year. This is the same as most other tort actions in the state that involve real property damage or personal injury cases. The law that governs this statute is Louisiana Civil Code Article 3492.

In most cases, you need to file a lawsuit within one year of the date you realized that your home had received damage or when you should have seen it. If you do not file within one year, you could lose your right to sue for compensation.

However, in some cases, the court can extend this statute of limitations. This extension is the result of special circumstances.

What Is the Statute of Limitations for?

A statute of limitations puts restrictions on the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit. With regard to a property damage statute of limitations, this limits how long you have to sue your homeowners’ insurance company. For example, in Louisiana, you have one year from the date your home received damage to file your lawsuit in civil court.

This statute does not determine the amount of time you have to file a claim with your insurance. Instead, your insurance contract should discuss this time limit.

When Does This Statute of Limitations for Property Damage Apply?

The Louisiana statute of limitations on property damage applies to intentional acts, negligence, and natural disasters.

For example, a major storm or high winds may cause damage that your insurance company should pay for. If they deny your claim, you have up to one year to sue your insurance company.

In addition, if the company or contractors who worked on your property employ faulty construction practices or use a faulty design, you can sue these individuals or companies. The same is true for other service providers, such as roofers, HVAC installers or repair persons, cable installers or providers, or anyone else who works on your home.

If your home receives damage as a result of vandalism, arson, or other intentional acts, this claim falls under the statute of limitations as well.

What Is a Delictual Action Under This Law?

Under Louisiana law, delictual actions are lawsuits. They cover tort actions that seek repayment for some kind of damage.

These actions are the result of the negligence or intentional actions of others that cause damage to your property. In the case of property damage, these actions may involve your homeowners’ insurance company or an individual or company that caused the damage to your home.

Why Should You Be Prompt When Reporting Property Damage?

Due to the strict, short statute of limitations on homeowners insurance claims, it is best to file them as soon as you find the damage.

Your insurance company may require that you file within 180 days or less, and Louisiana law sets limits on the time the company has to respond and pay the claim.

For example, these companies need to respond to your claim within 14–30 days, depending on the circumstances (e.g., damage versus catastrophic loss). In addition, these companies need to make a settlement offer within 30 days.

Because you only have one year to file your lawsuit, you need to handle your claim as quickly as possible. That way, you can still file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires if your claim gets denied or you do not receive a settlement offer that covers your needs.

What if the Statute of Limitations Has Passed?

If you find that the Louisiana statute of limitations on property damage has passed, a few things can happen. First, the defendant, the person or company you plan to sue, can request that the court dismiss a case by filing a motion for dismissal. The court is likely to grant this dismissal.

However, our attorneys can also seek extensions for a few reasons. For example, if you were under the age of 18 when the damage occurred or when you noticed it, the one-year statute of limitations does not apply until you become a legal adult.

In addition, we can seek exemptions if multiple parties caused the damage. The court may extend this deadline so you have time to find and prove the true cause of your property damage.

Why Should You Contact an Attorney To Start Your Claim?

The property damage statute of limitations has exceptions that you should understand. In addition, our attorneys can help you determine who to file your lawsuit against, where you are in the statute timeline, and how to prepare the best case.

We also understand your rights and responsibilities in the claims and lawsuit processes, and we can help you navigate both.

Contact Our Attorneys To Discuss the Louisiana Statute of Limitations on Property Damage

If your home has received damage and you need to know more about the Louisiana statute of limitations on property damage, contact our attorneys online at Insurance Claim HQ or call us 24/7. We can review your claim, and you can learn how we can help you with your case.