Like other legal claim types, medical malpractice cases are subject to filing deadlines imposed by state law. The goal of this guide is to help clients understand how claims are affected by the statute of limitations, as well as the importance of paying careful attention to the deadline as it applies to a particular case.
What is the Statute of Limitations?
The term refers to laws limiting the time a victim has to file a lawsuit, and the limit differs depending on the claim type. However, the results are the same regardless of the nature of the case; the court will dismiss the lawsuit and the victim will lose his or her right to a legal remedy. Therefore, it’s easy to see why it’s so critical for a Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Hollywood FL to understand and follow the statute of limitations as it applies to a medical malpractice claim.
The Statute as it Pertains to Medical Malpractice
In most areas, the statute of limitations is different for medical malpractice cases, partly because it’s not always obvious when a claim arises. It can be months or years before a person who received poor care becomes aware of the harm they’ve suffered, and that their malpractice claim may be valid.
Discovery of the Claim
As it relates to the above example, it would be unfair for a patient to lose his or her right to sue before they discover that they’ve been harmed. Most states recognize this, and to address the issue, many jurisdictions have discovery rules. This rule allows patients some leeway when they don’t discover harm within the time set forth by law. Under discovery rules, the statute of limitations does not start until the harm is discovered.
The Importance of Good Legal Advice
More than other areas of personal injury law, medical malpractice cases require the help of competent counselors. These claims can be medically and legally complex, and an experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Hollywood FL will be able to anticipate the state’s requirements while putting the claim in a position of success. Visit or call the Law Offices of McCullough & Leboff P.A. to schedule a no-obligation consultation.