Medical malpractice cases are extremely time-sensitive, so if you have been injured because of negligent acts of a medical professional then it is vital that you keep in mind that there is a time limit on how long you can wait to file a claim. The statute of limitations, depending on the state in which you reside, usually gives a plaintiff one to three years to pursue legal actions.
Pursuing a Case
After sustaining an injury, consult a medical malpractice attorney to determine if you have a case. These consultations are usually free. A knowledgeable attorney can answer any questions that you may have and guide you through the steps of pursuing a case.
Courts have different views on when the statute of limitations begins in medical malpractice cases, so it is in your best interest to have an experienced attorney by your side. The time for filing a claim begins to run upon the occurrence of the negligent act in some courts. Other courts believe that the time begins running when the negligent act results in an injury.
The injured party discovered or should have discovered their injury when the time began to run. Sometimes some courts believe that the time begins to run as soon as the treatment is over.
If injuries result in death then the court has to decide whether or not the case is still medical malpractice or if the wrongful death statute is applicable. Some courts say the statute begins to run when the patient dies. Here, things become complicated Other courts say that the statute begins to run when the negligent act allegedly caused the death.
Since different courts have different interpretations of the law, consult a medical malpractice attorney to see what the laws are in your state.