Visitor Question

Can I sue my ex-wife for an injury doing yardwork for her at our home?

Submitted By: Brian (Seattle, WA)

In May 2014 I was doing manual labor (at home) at the behest of my wife. I am not a manual labor kind of guy, I’m a computer guy so this was new to me. I ultimately suffered a back/neck injury that persists to this day, preventing me from working and causing pain and the inability to use my right hand as I normally would.

It appears to be permanent nerve damage directly caused by nerve impingement in my neck that I suffered in May of 2014. This cannot be fixed with surgery.

Can I file a suit against my (soon to be) ex-wife regarding this injury that never would have happened if it wasn’t for her insistence that I do the aforementioned manual labor? I believe there is a two year SOL which means the deadline is looming large. Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Brian,

It is difficult to take your question seriously. It appears you are asking if you can sue your wife (whether soon to be “ex” or not) for an injury you sustained while doing some chores around the house.

Unless we missed something, there doesn’t seem to be any evidence of force, or the threat of force from your wife compelling you to do the manual labor. If she had been pointing a gun or knife at you, forcing you to do the chore under threat of imminent bodily injury or death, then you might have the basis of a personal injury claim against her.

However, absent a threat of imminent bodily injury or death, it appears you could have employed Nancy Reagan’s famous motto and just said “No.” You didn’t.

You are incorrect about the State of Washington’s statute of limitations for the filing of a personal injury claim. In Washington State, the Statute of Limitations for filing a personal injury claim is three (3) years.

This means an injured person has three (3) years from the date of injury to either settle his or her personal injury claim or file a lawsuit. In the event an injured person misses the three (3) years statute of limitations, that person is barred from seeking legally enforced compensation.

Learn more here: Injury Claims for Accidents at Home

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney.

Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,


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