What is the New York statute of limitations for medical malpractice lawsuits?
First things first. For those who are new to the language of “legalese,” a “statute of limitations” is a specific kind of law that puts a strict time limit on your right to file a lawsuit in your state’s civil court system after you have suffered some type of injury or loss. There are different deadlines depending on the kind of case you’re filing.
Like many states, New York has passed a specific statute of limitations for application to medical malpractice cases. You can find the full text of this law online at New York Civil Practice Law and Rules section 214-a.
The main crux of this rule says that, starting from the day on which you have been injured or harmed because of a health care professional’s medical malpractice in New York, you have two and a half years to go to court and get your lawsuit filed. Or, if the malpractice occurred as part of a continuing course of treatment, the two-and-a-half year “clock” doesn’t start running until the conclusion of that course of treatment.
New York also has a special rule for medical malpractice cases where a foreign object was left in the patient’s body (during surgery, for example). According to the statute, a lawsuit over this type of medical error must be filed “within one year of the date of such discovery or of the date of discovery of facts which would reasonably lead to such discovery, whichever is earlier.”