The Wisconsin legislators took a great deal of care to consider many details when establishing a statute of limitations for medical malpractice legal actions. While the overall statute of limitations requires claims to be filed within three years of the date of injury, many factors can change that date.
Individuals who suffer injuries due to medical malpractice cannot always turn to a single date of treatment or surgery to identify the date of injury. As such, Wisconsin statute considers the following factors:
- Individuals can file within one year of the date the injury was discovered or should reasonably have been discovered, as long as the date is within five years of the negligent act.
- If a healthcare provider conceals a negligent act that caused injury to the patient, that patient can file within the latter of the three-year statute of limitations or within one year of the date the patient discovered the concealment or could reasonably be expected to discover it.
- If a foreign object is erroneously left in a patient's body, that patient has the latter of the three-year statute of limitations or one year after the date the object was discovered or could reasonably be expected to have been discovered.
It may be possible to toll the statute of limitations, which essentially means you stop the clock for a certain period. However, in the case of medical malpractice, lawsuits must be filed by the latter of the normal statute of limitations time period or the victim's tenth birthday.
Most medical malpractice cases require extensive time to prove. To develop an effective case, a Wisconsin medical malpractice lawyer must unravel the precise details leading up to an injury. This requires digging into medical records that may be difficult to obtain, locating witnesses willing to testify and many other activities. The preparatory process can quickly consume the statute of limitations time period, so it is vital to seek legal support as soon as possible. Contact Jeffrey M. Goldberg Law Officestoday.