New Jersey Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations
In New Jersey, any action or inaction by a doctor that violates their duty of care to a patient may constitute medical malpractice. For example, failure to properly diagnose or treat a patient can constitute medical malpractice in New Jersey. Medical malpractice can be done by any medical professional that owes you a duty of care. To prove whether or not a medical professional’s actions constitute malpractice, your attorney must prove the following four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. If your lawyer can prove that a negligent doctor’s actions constituted medical malpractice, you can hold them accountable in a lawsuit for compensation.
“Two Year” Rule for Medical Malpractice Claims in New Jersey
Usually, New Jersey has a two-year statute of limitations for all personal injury actions, including medical malpractice claims. A statute of limitations prevents you from filing a claim after a defined period with limited exceptions. Fortunately, New Jersey’s short statute of limitations does not begin to run until you become aware that you have been injured or reasonably should have been aware that you have been injured. If you have suffered an obvious injury as a result of medical malpractice, you should contact an attorney immediately because you have only a short period to file a lawsuit and the statute of limitations has started running the moment you were injured. Similarly, if you discover an injury that was not immediately obvious previously you should act quickly to ensure that any claim you may have is preserved. If a loved one has died as a result of medical malpractice, New Jersey imposes a strict two-year time limit from the date of death to file any malpractice claims.
Medical Malpractice Exceptions for Injuries to Children & Birth Injuries
For claims brought on behalf of children, New Jersey has several exceptions to the typical two-year statute of limitations. Like many other legal claims by minors, New Jersey allows a child to bring a claim within two years of their eighteenth birthday with some exceptions for birth injuries and wrongful death cases. This means that a child who was injured any time before their eighteenth birthday has a substantial period of time to bring any malpractice claims. However, because evidence can be lost and witnesses can become unavailable, it is important to bring claims as early as possible. If malpractice resulted in a birth injury, any claims must be filed on behalf of the child before their thirteenth birthday. In the event of a minor’s wrongful death due to malpractice, any claim must be filed within two years of the date of death (like other types of wrongful death cases)
Have More Questions about the Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations in NJ? Contact Mazie Slater
Medical malpractice claims are very complicated and present many unusual procedural obstacles. It is imperative to find an experienced attorney to assist you with these claims. At Mazie Slater Katz & Freeman our experienced medical malpractice attorneys will vigorously represent your interests. Our firm is one of the most reputable personal injury firms in New Jersey, and we have passionately represented our clients for years. Read more about our other successes in medical malpractice actions, today. For a free consultation contact us at (973) 228-9898.