Because § 1983 does not contain a
limitation period, an appropriate limitation period must be borrowed from
law cause of action. See Keller v. Prince George
's County, 827 F.2d 952, 955 n.2 (4th Cir.
1987). The Supreme Court has determined that the state statute governing
personal injury shall apply to § 1983 actions. See
v. Garcia, 471
261, 280, 85 L. Ed. 2d 254, 105
has a two-year statute for personal injuries. See
Code Ann. § 8.01-243(A). Therefore, you have two years from the time your
action accrued in which to bring your
§ 1983 action.
While the statutory limitations period
for a § 1983 action is borrowed from state law, the time the action
accrues is determined under federal law. See National Advertising Co.
v. City of
Raleigh, 947 F.2d 1158, 1162 (4th Cir. 1991). Under federal law, an action
accrues when the plaintiff knows or has reason to know of the injury
giving rise to the action.