When patients visit a doctor, they instill a large amount of confidence and trust in the doctor's abilities to appropriately treat and diagnose whatever condition the patient may be experiencing. Unfortunately, sometimes doctors and other medical professionals make mistakes. Often times, these mistakes can have tragic or catastrophic results.
This situation is often considered medical malpractice and patients who are negatively impacted by such negligence can sometimes recover compensation for the hardship they endure because of the medical mistakes that have been made. Medical malpractice laws exist in most states, including Ohio, but the laws covering recovery and statutes of limitation vary by state. Recently, legislation regarding statutes of limitation on medical malpractice claims in Ohio has come into question.
Although under question, the Supreme Court of Ohio recently upheld the four-year maximum statute of limitation on medical malpractice claims. The Ohio state law prevents patients from filing medical malpractice lawsuits more than four years after the date of the alleged malpractice.
The Supreme Court majority held that four years was a proper amount of time because, although patients with medical negligence claims are entitled to a reasonable amount of time to discover the medical problems and seek legal action, allowing more than four years opens the door for numerous legal concerns including corrupted or missing evidence and poor testimony because of faded memories.
For those who have experienced hardship due to a medical mistake, it is important to understand the impact of this four-year cap on litigation. A medical malpractice lawsuit takes money, extensive research and medical knowledge and time. It is important to seek the assistance of a medical malpractice attorney to ensure that all the appropriate steps are taken within the required timeframe so that the necessary and deserved compensation can be recovered.
Source: Beckershospitalreview.com, "Ohio Supreme Court Upholds 4-Year Cap for Malpractice Claims," Molly Gamble, Dec. 19, 2012