If you have been injured due to medical negligence and are looking to make a medical malpractice claim in Massachusetts, keep key deadlines in mind. State laws address how long a patient has to file a complaint; damage caps; and other important factors. These limitations can be difficult to keep in mind when beginning the claims process.
Standard Deadline is Three Years
In Massachusetts, victims have up to three years from the date of incidence to file a medical malpractice suit in a Massachusetts court. If a lawsuit is not filed in those three years, the victim may lose the right to sue for medical malpractice, unless the case falls into one of the exceptions.
The Discovery Rule
One of the exceptions to the three-year deadline is called the discovery rule. This is when the victim would not have been able to know about the medical malpractice case under reasonable circumstances. This means that, if the injured person could not have been able to know of the injury, the lawsuit then can be filed within three years from the date on which the person should have been aware of the injury.
Statute of Limitations for Minors
The laws are different for children under the age of 18. In the state of Massachusetts, a lawsuit must be filed within three years of the legal guardians learning of the injury. One exception to this rule is for children under the age of six. For any child under that age, the parents have until the child’s ninth birthday to file a lawsuit, regardless of how many years that might be. Medical malpractice Houston experts will help you win your case.
Limitations on Damages
There are states in which there is a cap on medical malpractice damages. Massachusetts is one of the states that limits how much and what type of compensation can be received in a medical malpractice lawsuit. In the state, a victim cannot be paid more than $500,000 for pain and suffering, embarrassment, loss of companionship, or other general damages. This cap does not apply to plaintiffs with injuries that involve a substantial or permanent loss or impairment of bodily function. It also does not apply to those with substantial disfigurement or other circumstances in which the cap would deprive the plaintiff of fair compensation for the injury.
If you believe you have a medical malpractice case, please call our office to schedule a free case evaluation with our experienced medical malpractice attorney.