If you have a malpractice issue with a hospital inone state but you live in another, what state must our attorney be licensed in?

Hospital in WI; we live in IL.

Asked on August 30, 2011 Illinois

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A lawsuit can be filed where the plaintiff lives or where the defendant lives or where the claim arose.  For convenience purposes such as filing documents with the court, appearing in court, etc, it would be preferable to file your lawsuit in IL where you live.  Your attorney should be licensed in IL.  If you decide not to file your lawsuit in IL, but to file in WI, your attorney should be licensed in WI.  There are procedures by which an attorney not licensed in a particular state, but licensed in another state can appear in court in the state in which he/she is not licensed.  Your attorney should be licensed in the state in which the lawsuit is filed.

Prior to filing a lawsuit against the hospital, it may be possible to settle the case with the insurance carrier for the hospital.  If the case is settled, no lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence (medical malpractice is negligence) prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.  The statute of limitations is another factor to consider when deciding where to file your lawsuit.  If the statute of limitations has expired in IL, but not in WI, then you will need to file your lawsuit in WI.  If the statute of limitations has expired in WI, but not in IL, then you will need to file your lawsuit in IL.


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