When does statute of limitations start – as of the date the incident or the date of the last treatment?

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When does statute of limitations start – as of the date the incident or the date of the last treatment?

At what point would the statute of limitation start for medical malpractice? Would it be from the point of the initial occurrence the caused something (i.e. terrible scars) or from the point that you realized treatments were ineffective?

Asked on September 2, 2011 under Malpractice Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

As a general matter, the statute of limitations on any sort of injury, including one caused by medical malpractice, starts running from the date of the event or occurence which caused the injury or damage. So, for example, if a physician somehow scarred you, the statute would typically run from the time the the scars were caused IF the scars were caused by an act of malpractice (e.g. by carelessness or wrong treatment). On the other hand, if the scars were not the malpractice, but the malpractice was the ineffective treatment, then the statute of limitations might start from when you realized--or at least should have realized--the treatment was ineffective. So the answer will depend on the exact situation and what was the actual malpractice in this case. There is, in any event, no reason to wait; if you think you have been the victim of malpractice, consult with a malpractice attorney *immediately* so you can file the case as soon as possible and make sure you get in under the SOL, if it has not already passed.


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