If you think that you or your loved one have been a victim of a medical error, you can file a claim. The time within which you can apply for your claim depends on the state, and if the medical institute is a government subsidiary or a private institute.
What is the statute of limitations for medical malpractices?
The statute of limitations may seem complex to understand at first, as each state has specific deadlines within which you should file for a medical malpractice claim. Overall, the statute of limitations on injury and/or malpractice claims may range anywhere between one to ten years. Apart from these state limitations, if you are pressing any criminal charges you may be required to abide by the federal deadlines that can be as less as six months. If you do not file a lawsuit in this period, you may not be eligible for a claim.
When does the statute of limitations begin?
The statute of limitations is tricky for medical malpractices since the clock does not start running until you discover that you have been suffering from some harm. The deadline for the statute of limitations depends on various factors and can vary as follows:
- At the time that you got hurt: In an event that you have undergone surgery and there were surgical complications that are preventing you from healing, then the clock will begin on the day of the surgery.
- At the time of the diagnosis of the illness: If your doctor has prescribed a medication that caused organ failure in the future, then the clock begins when you were diagnosed with the organ failure and not when you were prescribed the drug.
- Age of the Victim: Children develop differently compared to adults and their symptoms may not be recognized immediately. Hence, young children have longer deadlines to file for a claim.
- Continuous Treatment: If you have been visiting the same medical practitioner who has caused you medical harm then they may attempt to cover their own mistake. In such scenarios, the clock starts ticking when you seek medical help elsewhere.
- Delay in Symptoms: If the diagnosis conducted by your medical practitioner were incorrect or if there were any issues at the time of your surgery such as an error on the surgeon’s part that caused adverse effects to your health, the clock will begin when the harm is discovered and it has been realized that your suffering is a direct cause of the medical mistake.
Why should you hire a good personal injury lawyer for medical malpractice?
Medical practitioners who were at-fault will immediately try to defend themselves by disregarding a case based on the statute of limitations. A seasoned personal injury attorney will support your case and carry out negotiations on your behalf so that your case receives a fair hearing even if it may be old based on the circumstances and facts of your lawsuit. A knowledgeable lawyer can help you determine if your case is within the accepted statute of limitations of the state and federal deadlines, or if there are any deadline extensions that are applicable, and subsequently help you fight the lawsuit so that you receive the compensation that you deserve for your physical and emotional suffering.