In the State of Florida, there is a two-year statute of limitations from the date of the incident, which is defined by the time when the act or omission of negligence occurred to file a lawsuit.
It is extremely important for an injured claimant to not wait to speak to an experienced medical malpractice attorney because it can take weeks, if not months or longer, to fully obtain medical records, conduct a thorough, and complete evaluation before a case can be initiated. The medical malpractice statute of limitations in St. Petersburg is limited, so it best to seek help from a lawyer as soon as possible.
The Deadline to File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit
The statute of limitations in a medical malpractice case is a filing deadline, wherein if that deadline is missed the injured claimant will forever lose their ability to bring and prosecute a case.
However, the state has adopted a rule called the delayed discovery rule, which means if the patient did not know and had no reason to be aware that they were harmed as the result of medical negligence, it can extend the statute of limitations for up to four years. In rare cases, a seven-year statute of repose could apply from the date of the incident, if there are unique facts like a medical provider who tried to hide evidence of the medical negligence from the patient.
If the lawsuit is properly filed prior to the medical malpractice statute of limitations deadline, then the case is preserved and protected from dismissal. Even though it may take years to heal from an injury as the result of the medical malpractice incident, that will not be a sufficient excuse for missing the deadline. Once a person suspects that they may be the victim of medical malpractice it is essential that they immediately seek help from a diligent attorney.
Calculating the Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations is calculated from the date that the act or omission of medical negligence occurred.
However, there is a second statute of limitations date that will start a two-year clock from the point in time when the patient discovered the act or omission of medical negligence. Even if a patient discovers that medical negligence has occurred after two years, it is rare for the delayed discovery statute of limitations to ever exceed four years from the date the incident occurred.
For A Minor or Someone with a Disability
There can be an extended statute of limitations in cases involving minors or individuals with mental disabilities that could extend the statute from two years from the date on which the act or omission of medical negligence occurred up to four years from the date on which the act or omission of medical negligence occurred.
However, in the case of a minor, if the parents or legal custodians of the minor know or should know about the medical negligence, then a two-year statute of limitations could apply in that situation.
How a Medical Malpractice Attorney Could Help
The statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims in St. Petersburg os two years from the date of the incident. It is not uncommon for a patient or a patient’s family member to not be aware that medical negligence occurred immediately. Additionally, it takes time to obtain and review all the documentation that is necessary to properly investigate a potential medical malpractice claim. The costs and expenses of properly investigating a potential medical malpractice claim can be substantial.
The benefit of retaining a medical malpractice lawyer is that the injured claimant will get the legal expertise and resources necessary to and immediately investigate, which will be necessary in order to make a decision regarding the merits of the case prior to that two-year statute of limitations deadline. For most cases, if a lawsuit is not filed within the medical malpractice statute of limitations in St. Petersburg, injured claimants may be ineligible to recover compensation for damages.
It is extremely important that if one believes they may be the victim of medical malpractice to immediately schedule a free consultation and initial investigation. Get started today.