Nearly all legal claims are governed by statute of limitations laws, which
act to limit the amount of time that someone has to file a lawsuit against a party.
Medical malpractice is one such field that is governed by a s
tatute of limitations. Under Missouri law, anyone that has been injured at the hands of a medical
professional has only two years from the start of an underlying medical
error to bring a doctor to court for their injury, with some exceptions.
Read further to learn more about statute of limitations laws and how your
medical malpractice case may be affected.
Explaining Statute of Limitations Laws
Statute of limitations refers to the amount of time that a plaintiff has
to bring a lawsuit against a defendant. If a case is filed outside of
the designated time period allotted for the specific case, then the court
can throw out the case and the right to pursue compensation is lost.
Missouri statute of limitations laws dictate:
- You have two years from the time the medical error occurred to file a lawsuit;
- You have two years from the discovery of a mistake to file a lawsuit if
a surgeon allowed a foreign object to remain within the body;
- No medical malpractice case can be brought if the treatment mistake was
made more than 10 years before; and
- Any medical malpractice that occurred to a minor must occur by the time
they turn 20 or the 10 year time period has passed, whichever is sooner.
One of the problems with
statute of limitations laws is that it can sometimes take a long period of time before someone is
actually harmed by the negligence of a doctor, which does not mean that
their compensation claim is not invalid. For example, someone that has
a piece of sponge left in them after a surgery may not discover this until
they experience symptoms at a later date. It would not be fair for a harmed
patient to lose their right to obtain compensation before they even realized
that they were injured by their care.
Medical Malpractice Attorneys Can Help!
Thankfully, one of the key components in a
medical malpractice case is the process of discovery. This means that people who discover
their injury outside of the statute of limitations period are allowed
the same amount of time to bring a lawsuit. If the same person that had
a sponge left inside of them after a surgery discovered this mistake five
years following the incident, they will have two years to file a lawsuit
against the surgeon. If they ignored their symptoms and chose to neglect
getting the piece of sponge removed and then tried to file a claim, it
may not be valid.
If you or a loved one have been injured at the hands of a medical professional
and are wondering what types of compensation you may be eligible to receive,
consult with an experienced lawyer at Millikan Wright, LLC. We offer
free initial case consultations with our legal professionals to allow you to explore your options before
taking action. You have nothing to lose-
give us a call today!