Business Health for Healthcare Businesses
How Insurance Keeps You Strong

Chapter 2: How Insurance Can Save Your Medical or Healthcare Practice Millions
Part 1: Malpractice Insurance for Healthcare Professionals
Medical Malpractice Statutes of Limitations

Each state has its own statute of limitations concerning how long someone can wait to file a medical malpractice claim. Some states follow the "discovery rule" for medical malpractice statutes of limitations, which says the limitation period does not begin to run until the injury is discovered, or when the patient (or their physician) should have discovered it.

Keeping that in mind, here are a few examples of state statutes of limitations:

  • California: 3 years from date of injury, or 1 year from date of discovery of the injury (whichever occurs first).
  • New York: 3 years, with discovery rule applying in some cases.
  • Illinois: 2 years from the date the patient knew or reasonably should have known of the injury.
  • Texas: 2 years, discovery rule applies, but only up to 10 years after the injury occurs.
  • Florida: 2 years from the time the injury was discovered or reasonably should have been discovered.

Medical Malpractice Statutes of Limitations by State

State Statute of Limitations Discovery Rule?

California

3 years from date of injury OR 1 year from date of discovery (whichever is first)

YES

New York

3 years

SOMETIMES

Illinois

2 years from when patient knew or reasonably should have known about injury

YES

Texas

2 years

YES, up to 10 years

Florida

2 years from when injury was discovered or should have been discovered

YES

So say you operate an occupational therapy practice in Florida and a patient suffers an injury because of your treatment. They have two years to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against you. Because these statutes are years long, it's imperative that you keep the same Malpractice policy in force to ensure your practice is protected at all times.

Check out Edgar Snyder & Associates' page Statute of Limitations by State New browser window icon. for more information about medical malpractice timeframes.

Next: State Laws and Malpractice Insurance

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