If you have been injured or you owe someone a debt, there is a certain of time in which a suit must be brought to recover damages for you injury or to hold you liable for the debt. This time period is known as the statute of limitations. Many of the applicable statute of limitations in Texas are codified in Section 16.001, et. seq. of the Texas Civil Practices and Remedies Code (TCPRC).
The most common statute of limitations are the two year statute, section 16.003,TCPRC, applicable to personal injury actions and the four year statute, section 16.004, TCPRC, applicable to suits on contracts or debts.
In addressing the statute of limitations the most important thing that must be determined is when did the cause of action accrue. Accrual refers to the date when the limitations period begins to run, that is, when the person is legally entitled to bring a suit. For some causes of action the accrual date is defined by statute. For example in medical negligence cases the cause of action accrues on the date the breach of duty occurred or the date of last treatment. (Section 74.251, TCPRC) or in wrongful death cases the cause of action accrues when the person dies. (Section 16.003(b), TCPRC).