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Arizona Statute of Limitations

A stylized image of Arizona withe the writing statute of limitations

Statute of Limitations AZ- Summary

Arizona’s statute of limitations establishes a deadline before which civil cases – such as lawsuits – must be filed in the state. In relation to criminal charges, it also prevents prosecutors from charging an individual with a crime after a specified period of time has passed. The statutes of limitations for different civil actions and crimes can vary from state to state, so read on for more information about how they apply in Arizona. 

Arizona Civil Statute of Limitations

Arizona’s civil statute of limitations sets deadlines under which lawsuits and other civil actions must be filed in the state. All personal injury claims in Arizona are given a deadline of two years – however, libel or slander claims are given a one year time limit to bring forward. Usually, time starts counting down once the grievance in question occurs or is discovered.

Be aware that if you fail to file your civil claim before the established deadline, the opposing party can use the statute of limitations in their defense and file a motion to dismiss the case on the basis that the time allotted to file it has already passed. Any legal claim will be lost forever once your case is dismissed. 

A summary of civil statutes of limitations in Arizona:

Injury to PersonFalse imprisonment: 1 yr. §12-541; if not: 2 yrs. §12-542
Libel/Slander1 yr. §12-541
Fraud3 yrs. §12-543(3)
Injury to Personal Property2 yrs. §12-542
Professional MalpracticeMedical: 2 yrs. §12-542
Trespass2 yrs. §12-542(3)
Collection of Rents
ContractsWritten: 6 yrs. §12-548; Oral (for indebtedness): 3 yrs. §12-543(1)
Collection of Debt on Account3 yrs. §12-543(2)
Judgments4 yrs. foreign judgment §12-544(3)

State laws related to filing lawsuits can change often. While our goal is to provide the most current information available, please consider contacting an Arizona attorney or doing legal research of your own to verify the state law(s) you’re researching. 

Arizona Criminal Statute of Limitations

Arizona’s criminal statute of limitations sets time limits on the filing of criminal charges in the state. As it is in most states, Arizona does not place a deadline on bringing charges for crimes considered especially heinous, including murder and violent sexual assault. Crimes involving misuse of public funds or public records also don’t carry a statute of limitations. The law says prosecutors can charge someone with one of these crimes no matter how much time has passed. Other felonies typically have a seven-year statute of limitations in Arizona.

Most misdemeanors have a statute of limitations of one year in Arizona, and petty offenses carry a six-month time limit. The time limit within which criminal charges may be brought begins once the crime is identified, or should have been identified.

A summary of criminal statutes of limitations in Arizona:

Code Section13-107
FeloniesMurder, violent sexual assault, misuse of public funds, falsifying public records: none; other felonies: 7 yrs.
Misdemeanors1 year; petty offenses: 6 months
Acts During Which Statute Does Not RunIf an alleged criminal is in hiding or out of state, max. extension of 3 yrs.; statutory periods begin once a crime is or should have been identified

State laws are always subject to change. While our goal is to provide the most current information available, please consider contacting an Arizona attorney or doing legal research of your own to verify the state law(s) you’re researching. 

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