IOWA

Negligence / Personal Injury
2 Years

Injuries to person or reputation--relative rights--statute penalty. Those founded on injuries to the person or reputation, including injuries to relative rights, whether based on contract or tort, or for a statute penalty, within two years. Iowa Code Ann. § 614.1

Statute of Repose - a. Those founded on the death of a person or injuries to the person or property brought against the manufacturer, assembler, designer, supplier of specifications, seller, lessor, or distributor of a product based upon an alleged defect in the design, inspection, testing, manufacturing, formulation, marketing, packaging, warning, labeling of the product, or any other alleged defect or failure of whatever nature or kind, based on the theories of strict liability in tort, negligence, or breach of an implied warranty shall not be commenced more than fifteen years after the product was first purchased, leased, bailed, or installed for use or consumption unless expressly warranted for a longer period of time by the manufacturer, assembler, designer, supplier of specifications, seller, lessor, or distributor of the product. Iowa Code Ann. § 614.1

Fraud
5 Years The “discovery” of the fraud or wrong which will set the statute in motion does not necessarily mean actual and direct personal knowledge by the complaining party. It is sufficient if such party has such knowledge or notice as would lead a man of reasonable prudence to make inquiries which would disclose the fraud.Iowa Code § 614.1(4)

An action for relief on the ground of fraud is barred after the lapse of five years, from the time the fraud was (a) actually discovered or (b) ought to have been discovered by the exercise of ordinary diligence.  Simmons v. Western Life Indemnity Co., 171 Iowa 429 (1915).

The fact that children of deceased member of partnership did not employ an attorney or an expert accountant and demand books and records from other members of partnership, to determine whether the other members of the partnership were defrauding the children of the deceased partner, would not show a want of diligence and prevent the tolling of the statute of limitations until discovery of the alleged fraud.  Higbee v. Walsh, 229 Iowa 408 (1940).
Toxic Tort
2 Years Iowa Code § 614.1(2)

Worker had enough information, more than two years preceding the filing of his lawsuit, which alleged that his liposarcoma was caused by his exposure to toxic chemical “Agent Orange” during employment, to put him on notice that he should investigate, and, thus, action was barred by two-year statute of limitations; worker was aware that there were health concerns about “Agent Orange,” and had asked his doctor if there might be connection between it and his cancer. Estate of Montag v. T.H. Agriculture & Nutrition Co., Inc., 509 N.W 2d 469 (Iowa 1993).
Wrongful Death
2 Years Injuries to person or reputation--relative rights--statute penalty. Those founded on injuries to the person or reputation, including injuries to relative rights, whether based on contract or tort, or for a statute penalty, within two years. Iowa Code Ann. § 614.1
Medical Malpractice
2 Years Action " arising out of patient care, within two years after the date on which the claimant knew, or through the use of reasonable diligence should have known, or received notice in writing of the existence of, the injury or death for which damages are sought in the action, whichever of the dates occurs first, but in no event shall any action be brought more than six years after the date on which occurred the act or omission or occurrence alleged in the action to have been the cause of the injury or death unless a foreign object unintentionally left in the body caused the injury or death." Iowa Code § 614.1(9).

The statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases is triggered upon actual or imputed knowledge of both the injury and its cause in fact; knowledge of the wrongfulness of the defendant's conduct, however, is not required to commence the statute of limitations.  Murtha v. Cahalan, 745 N.W.2d 711 (Iowa 2008).

A plaintiff does not need to know the full extent of the injury before the statute of limitations in a medical malpractice action begins to run.  Rathje v. Mercy Hosp., 745 N.W.2d 443 (Iowa 2008).
Malpractice (Other Professions)
Products Liability
2 Years

Injuries to person or reputation--relative rights--statute penalty. Those founded on injuries to the person or reputation, including injuries to relative rights, whether based on contract or tort, or for a statute penalty, within two years. Iowa Code Ann. § 614.1

Discovery:

“Discovery rule” protects plaintiffs who were unaware of accrual of claim and could not have been aware of it in exercise of reasonable diligence.  Roth v. G.D. Searle & Co., 27 F.3d 1303 (8th Cir. 1994).

Discovery rule, when applicable, commences period of limitations to run from later of date of discovery or date when, by exercise of reasonable diligence, plaintiff should have discovered wrongful act. Brown v. Ellison, 304 N.W.2d 197 (Iowa 1981).

Under discovery rule, injured party's duty to investigate does not depend on exact knowledge of nature of problem causing injury; party need only be aware that problem existed. Franzen v. Deere and Co., 377 N.W.2d 660, 662 (Iowa 1985). Per conversation with attorney, this conservative statute means that the plaintiff is on notice when he or she discovers an injury.

Intentional Torts
Municipal Liability/Sovereign Immunity
2 Years for claims against state, requires written notice to State Appeal Board within those 2 years.
Discovery Rule
SOL runs from date injury is, or should have been discovered.
Comparative Negligence
Plaintiff cannot recover damages if they are 51% or more responsible and damage is diminished by plaintiff's percent of fault.
Charitable Immunity
Abrogated as to paying hospital patients.
Disabilities
1 Year from removal of disability to commence action. Infants (18th birthday).
Punitive Damages
Clear and convincing evidence that defendant acted with willful or wanton conduct. Caps: None
No-Fault Insurance
None
Consumer Fraud Complaint
Iowa Office of the Attorney General, Consumer Protection
http://www.state.ia.us/government/ag/consumer/index.html
(515)281-5926
(515)281-6771 (Fax)
(888)777-4590

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