Medical Malpractice in Pennsylvania: Compensation and Statute of Limitations
For victims of Medical Malpractice, or negligence by a doctor or other medical professional, there are state-specific laws regarding the time limits for filing a lawsuit and the amount of money that can be recovered through the lawsuit.
In Pennsylvania, the laws allow for patients that have been misdiagnosed, suffered surgical mistakes, errors in medication, injuries during child birth, delayed diagnosis or other errors in medical treatment, to receive significant monetary compensation for their injuries and suffering.
Time Limit for Filing a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit
As in every other state, there is a statute of limitations for medical malpractice lawsuits in Pennsylvania. The general rule is the time limit for bringing a lawsuit is two years from the date you discover or should discover the injury. What this means is that, upon discovering that an injury has been suffered and may have been caused by medical negligence, the victim has a two year window to file a lawsuit against the doctor or hospital.
There are some exceptions to this two year rule, including cases where a foreign object, such as a surgical instrument, gauze or other, was unintentionally left in the body during a surgical procedure. You attorney will be able to tell you if your case is subject to the two year time limit or not.
(For more state-specific information on Pennsylvania's medical malpractice claims, see Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice: Statute of Limitations and Award Limits.
For victims of medical malpractice, the impact, both financially and emotionally can be devastating. The cost of medical treatment alone can quickly overwhelm a family, coupled with injuries that often lead to an inability to work, lead to financial distress.
Additionally, the pain and suffering that a family will have to endure, whether it’s repeated surgeries, permanent disability, or the loss of enjoyment of life can have a devastating emotional impact.
Medical malpractice law in Pennsylvania allows victims to recover monetary compensation for a wide variety of damages, including but not limited to:
- Associated Medical Expenses
- Estimated Future Medical Expenses
- Lost Income
- Future Lost Income
- Compensation for Pain and Suffering
Can I File a Lawsuit Against my Doctor for His Mistake?
Medical malpractice is an exceptionally complicated area of law, and prosecuting a medical malpractice lawsuit can cost $100,000 or more. Additionally, malpractice insurance companies and their attorneys will often vigorously defend any claim brought against them.
Anyone thinking about bringing a lawsuit against his/her doctor or hospital should talk to an attorney with experience handling and litigating medical malpractice lawsuits. The details of every case are unique, and require someone seasoned in medical malpractice law to determine if a case has a good chance at a successful medical malpractice lawsuit.
Many medical malpractice lawyers will offer a free initial consultation to give their guidance and advice to victims of medical negligence. It is always advised that anyone suffering financially and emotionally due to a medical mistake take the time to contact an experienced attorney for a consultation.