When people report to a medical facility to give birth to a child, they are filled with extremely powerful emotions. No parent ever forgets the days when their children were born, but unfortunately too many parents look back on at least one birth with horror, as complications during a delivery is about as stressful a situation as anyone could ever encounter. To make matters worse, a complication that was the fault of the medical professionals who were overseeing the birth may not lead to tangible harm until much later in that child’s life.
Sadly, too many parents who discover that their child has been seriously harmed as a result of medical negligence during birth wrongly assume that too much time has passed to be able to seek legal recourse. Below you will find a brief overview of how time can play a role in a birth injury lawsuit that arises because of medical negligence. Any parent whose child has suffered because of this mistake will need to obtain the advice and guidance of experienced New York medical malpractice lawyers as soon as possible.
The Statute of Limitations
Any type of lawsuit that arises in New York must be filed within the relevant statute of limitations. There are different time limits that exist for different types of claims, but for medical malpractice the statute of limitations in New York is 2.5 years from the date of injury. As a result, any claim that’s filed after that time limit has expired will be dismissed as a matter of law, even if that claim would have otherwise been completely valid.
The Statute of Limitations and Birth Injuries
Fortunately, there are some exceptions that exist with regards to the statute of limitations. When it comes to birth injury situations, an exception to this time limit could be of paramount importance. Basically, a statute of limitations will be extended, or toll, when a plaintiff could not have reasonably discovered that an injury had occurred. The statute only begins to run when that injury either was discovered or should have been discovered.
When it comes to birth injuries, there are situations where this scenario could be relevant. That’s because many diagnoses that can result from a birth injury, such as cerebral palsy or different forms of developmental delays, are not discovered until the child has gotten older and problems are noticed. However, as soon as parents realize that there could be a problem with their child, they need to obtain a full medical evaluation as soon as possible to clearly define what could be wrong and what needs to be done for treatment.
If your child has been harmed because of a mistake made by the medical professionals overseeing the birth, you need to seek the help of New York medical malpractice lawyers who have been fighting for the rights of those most vulnerable to harm for more than 40 years. Contact The Fitzgerald Law Firm today to schedule a free initial consultation.