Every civil jurisdiction has a legal system which specifies the time limit in which the plaintiff or the defendant may file a claim. The purpose is to ensure the claimant has a reasonable time to pursue their case and also help the defendant have time to defend themselves. Just like other States, Alaska has a time limit by which anyone filing a medical malpractice claim should follow. If you have suffered injuries as a result of medical malpractice, you need to be aware of the statute of limitations. A personal injury attorney Anchorage Ak or a medical malpractice lawyer can help you understand how to go about your injuries.
Understanding Time Limits For Medical Malpractice Cases In Alaska
If you have suffered harm due to someone’s medical negligence, the statute of limitations will be used to limit your rights to file a lawsuit. In Alaska, a plaintiff has only two years to have their medical malpractice claim filed. The two years’ time starts from the date you suffered harm from the negligent healthcare provider. However, this may be different in some cases. In situations where the plaintiff is not aware that harm occurred, then the discovery rule is applied. The two years then starts from the date in which the plaintiff discovers the injury. Anyone who wants to be on the safe side when filing a medical malpractice claim must be aware of three main aspects. They include:
- Discovery rule: The statute of limitations starts running when the harm is discovered. In a medical malpractice case, the statute of limitations begins when the patient learns that they suffered an injury.
- Statute of repose: This is a secondary time limit. In Alaska, one is barred from filing a medical malpractice claim more than ten years from the date the malpractice occurred. A statute of repose cannot be tolled. If a plaintiff misses the extended deadline, they may not have any other chance to seek compensation for their injuries. A statue of repose applies even when the claimant has a disability or is under the age of majority at the time of injury.
- Tolling or suspension: In many cases, the limitation period may be suspended or tolled for two years until the disability ceases. For example, if the plaintiff was mentally incapacitated, the running or statute limitation might be suspended until they become of full age.
Getting Legal Help
Statute of limitations in medical malpractice cases can be overwhelming. Again, each state has its own unique way on the exceptions applied, which tends to be confusing. If one tries to file their case when the deadline has passed, the doctor in question will most likely file a motion to dismiss the case. If they win, then you lose everything. Anyone not sure about how the statute of limitations may apply in their case may consider seeking an experienced lawyer to help them have a successful claim. If you have a question on the time limit for medical malpractice in Alaska, you can consult a medical malpractice lawyer who understands your concerns to the time limits.