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Medical Malpractice’s Statute of Limitations in Florida


Jacksonville personal injury attorneys at Edwards & Ragatz are well versed in the statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims in Florida. If you need to file a medical malpractice lawsuit, you have a certain amount of time to do it. If you don’t file the lawsuit on time, you will be barred from collecting any potential awards This is called the statute of limitations. Florida has its own statute of limitations, so never assume that what you know about filing a malpractice suit in another state is the same in Florida. Many states have a separate rule for malpractice lawsuits, and some even have exceptions to the rule.

Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations isn’t always as simple as saying that you have a year to file a malpractice lawsuit. The time may start ticking at the time you learned of the malpractice or at the time the malpractice actually took place. Florida has exceptions to the rule, such as a shorter time to file if certain actions have taken place. This might include a doctor leaving a foreign object inside you.

Florida’s Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice

Jacksonville personal injury lawyers at Edwards & Ragatz are familiar with Florida’s statute of limitations for medical malpractice.The statute of limitations for Florida is outlined in the Florida Comprehensive Medical Malpractice Reform Act (“Act”). Florida has a two-year statute of limitations for medical malpractice with a four-year statute of repose. If the medical malpractice involves fraud, intentional misrepresentation or concealment, the cap on the statute of limitations is seven years. Florida’s one exception is if the person claiming malpractice is 8 years old or younger — in that case, the seven-year statute of limitations doesn’t bar the bringing of a malpractice case.

However, if the matter includes ordinary negligence, the case is subject to a four-year statute of limitations. Ordinary negligence might be for a case such as a slip and fall, dog bite, vehicle accident or another type of personal injury matter. The shortened term for medical malpractice was set in the hopes of decreasing the number of medical malpractice cases.

It is important to contact an attorney regarding medical malpractice as soon as possible as a presuit investigation must be conducted before a lawsuit is filed. The presuit investigation determines who is liable for the negligence. Since a petition needs to be filed, the attorney may name any medical person or entity that could have liability. When it becomes clear, though the investigation, that a certain party is not liable, that party will be dropped from the lawsuit. During the presuit investigation, no lawsuit may be filed for the 90 days the court grants for the investigation. The person bringing the suit and those named in the lawsuit must also conduct informal discovery. If the parties do not adhere to the rules of the presuit investigation, the court could dismiss the case.

Contact a Medical Malpractice Attorney

If you believe you have been a victim of medical malpractice, contact a personal injury attorney immediately. Many states have exceptions to the standard statute of limitations rule, which means that you could lose your right to file if you a) do not make the regular statute of limitations, or b) your situation happens to fall in one of the exceptions for the shorter filing times for your state.

If you or a loved one suffered from any form of medical malpractice, allow one of our Jacksonville personal injury lawyers to provide a free consultation. An attorney can provide you with legal assistance to determine if you have a case and help you receive compensation for your injuries. Contact an esteemed personal Jacksonville medical malpractice attorney at Edwards & Ragatz for a free consultation: (904) 295-1050  or through our website

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