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Affirmative Defenses

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Affirmative Defenses
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There are several affirmative defenses. They may be a complete bar to the claim. They may be raised in regards to a tort claim or any other claim. One of those affirmative defenses is that of the statute of limitations. Every state has a statute of limitations for virtually every type of civil claim. This statute of limitations is set by the state’s legislative body.

The length of the statute of limitations is arbitrary. However that is the statute of limitations for that type of claim. If the claim is not asserted within the time allowed then it is barred. In other words what is required in most states is the filing a law suit at the courthouse. In addition some states require actual service of the suit papers upon the defendant before the statute runs.

Affirmative Defenses-Assumption Of Risk

Another defense that may be asserted in a tort case is that of assumption of the risk. Assumption of the risk involves the plaintiff understanding the risk and a voluntary acceptance of that risk. For instance going out to the supermarket during a very bad ice storm may be an assumption of the risk. In other words if you slip and fall, then you probably have assumed the risk. You knew it was icy and you chose to go into it.


Several states still recognize various types of immunity. That immunity may come in the form of sovereign immunity. Sovereign immunity is based upon the concept that the King cannot be sued. However many states have waived that immunity in whole or in part. This is something that varies from state to state. In Virginia there has been a partial waiver.

Charitable immunity is a doctrine that may apply to certain entities. A charity is one that fulfills a charitable function and does not make any attempt to collect debts. As a result they may be immune from tort claims in some states.

There are certain states that still recognize elements of family immunity. Some tort claims may not be asserted against parents or siblings for certain types of behavior.

For more info on affirmative defenses and other personal injury concepts see the other pages on this site or see the pages on Wikipedia

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