Medical Negligence claims time limits
Most, if not all, things in life have an expiry date. This is no different for medical negligence claims.
Due to the time limits in medical negligence claims, you should seek legal advice at the earliest opportunity if you suspect you might have a medical negligence claim.
The investigation and pursuit of medical negligence claims is notoriously complicated and it takes time to obtain all the relevant medical records, evidence and expert reports to support a medical negligence claim. You want that expiry date, that time limit, as far as way as possible to provide you and your lawyers with sufficient time to investigate and pursue your claim.
Generally speaking, you have 3 years in which to bring a medical negligence claim. The time limit of 3 years starts to run from the date the negligence occurred. There are also court timelines that need to be followed in the months leading up to the 3 year time limit, which is another reason why it is important to get legal advice early.
Of course, there are exceptions to the general 3 year rule.
For example, where there is an injury that remains latent for some time, the period of 3 years begins to run from the date the injury first comes to the person’s knowledge.
You can also bring a claim beyond the 3 year time limit if you can establish that a fact material to your claim has come to your attention and you apply for an extension of time within 12 months of discovering that material fact.
Time limits are also different for children and for persons under a legal disability such as a mental incapacity.