Medical errors are currently the third leading cause of death in the United States, with some estimating over 250,000 people die as a result of preventable medical mistakes. When someone is injured or killed as a result of a medical professional’s negligence, they can pursue a New Hampshire medical malpractice claim against the responsible parties. Medical malpractice claims are very similar to other New Hampshire personal injury claims. However, there are additional requirements that must be followed; otherwise, a plaintiff runs the risk of losing their right to file a claim and recover for their injuries or loss.
Perhaps the most important place to start when discussing the procedural requirements of a medical malpractice case is how long a plaintiff has to file their lawsuit. Medical malpractice timing requirements are outlined in the various statutes of limitations. Typically, a plaintiff must file a medical malpractice claim within three years from the date of the occurrence giving rise to the claim.
In some cases, a plaintiff may not know about their injuries until a later date. For example, if a doctor misdiagnoses a plaintiff’s illness, the plaintiff would not immediately know of the doctor’s mistake. In these cases, a plaintiff can bring the claim within three years from the date they discover that they may have a claim, or three years from the date that such discovery should have been made with the exercise of reasonable diligence. Note that minor children whose claim arose before their 18th birthday have until they turn 20 to file a claim.