What is the statute of limitations for negligence by a doctor, as my doctor incorrectly diagnosed me two years ago, before I received my correct arthritis diagnosis six months ago?
The statute of limitations for negligence by a doctor is generally two years from the correct date of diagnosis of your injury which your doctor had failed to notice. A claim against a doctor for negligence should be possible in cases of misdiagnosis as not only would your injury have caused significant pain and trauma, but valuable time may have been lost in treating your condition which may have deteriorated as a result. However – regardless of how clear liability appears to be – the Statute of Limitations for compensation for negligence by a doctor still applies and you will be unable to make a claim after two years has passed since your injury. For this reason, you should consult a personal injury* solicitor at the earliest opportunity following your injury caused by the negligence of a doctor.
The two year Statute of Limitations for negligence by a doctor lies in place in order to ensure that a claim is made within a reasonable space of time while evidence is still readily available. The details of your injury caused by the negligence of a doctor will be supported by evidence which can verify that negligence has taken place – however this evidence can become misplaced or forgotten in time. The Statute of Limitations is therefore in place to ensure that the compensation for negligence by a doctor is sought while details of your injury can be easily verified and also to protect the doctor in question from constant fear of litigation. The evidence which is gathered will determine the strength of your claim against a doctor for negligence, and a solicitor should be consulted if you require help in gathering this evidence.
It should also be noted that exceptions apply to the Statute of Limitations for negligence by a doctor, meaning it will not always be two years. For example, a child who has sustained an injury caused by the negligence of a doctor will legally be unable to make a claim until he or she has reached the age of eighteen, at which point the Statute of Limitations will take effect. However as compensation for a claim against a doctor for negligence may be required before then, a parent or guardian can make a claim for a child at any stage between the accident and the child’s eighteenth birthday – meaning a child who has been injured will have until their twentieth birthday to claim compensation. The Statute of Limitations for compensation for negligence by a doctor may be different if your accident occurred abroad, and will depend on the country in which you sustained your misdiagnosis.
As six months has passed since your correct diagnosis, you should contact a solicitor regarding your claim against a doctor for negligence at the earliest opportunity to ensure that it is not time barred. Preparing a claim for compensation for negligence by a doctor can be difficult as the negligence of your doctor must be verified through the assessment of another medical professional, who will verify whether or not a competent medical professional would have taken the same steps. Whether your injury caused by the negligence of a doctor will be successful will depend upon the evidence which can be gathered by your solicitor and to avoid your claim being blocked by the Statute of Limitations for negligence by a doctor, a solicitor should be consulted at the earliest opportunity.