Is there a time limit for filing a malpractice case? You bet there is, and a would-be malpractice plaintiff had better stay on top of the details in order to not jeopardize his or her legal claims.
In fact, all states have statutorily enacted statutes of limitation laws that grant repose to potential defendants after a certain stated period.
The reason lies in equity, with time limits being established to avoid the possibility for open-ended liability to persist perpetually. Over time, memories fade, witnesses pass away and evidence is lost. It simply becomes more difficult to bring and defend a legal claim with accuracy and fairness.
For those reasons, it is imperative for any person injured through third-party medical negligence to be duly aware that the clock is ticking following that injury.
That means that an experienced plaintiffs’ medical malpractice attorney should be contacted without delay to investigate a claim, collect relevant information and preserve a client’s legal rights through timely filing of a legal action. Tardiness can — and, sadly, sometimes does — close off all legal remedies in hospital negligence cases.
Limitation statutes in medical malpractice cases often provide for a more truncated filing period than is the case with other types of personal injuries.
That is true in Missouri, where, in most cases, an injured party has only two years following the date of an injury to file a claim.
There are some exceptions to that general rule. Children have a longer time period to file, as do patients who are harmed through negligence that they cannot reasonably discover within two years.
A proven malpractice lawyer can explain all relevant facets related to Missouri’s filing requirements, as well as closely examine the details of a claim and file an action that has clear merit.