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Why Contacting a Malpractice Attorney Quickly Matters


Medical malpractice is a serious issue that can impact your health and well-being significantly. If you’re a victim of medical negligence in Louisiana, it’s crucial to understand the importance of the statute of limitations and why contacting a malpractice attorney swiftly can make all the difference for Louisiana individuals. Explore the reasons behind these factors with Spencer Calahan

Defining Medical Malpractice in Louisiana

Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider deviates from the accepted standards of care and harms a patient. 

Medical malpractice may manifest in various forms, including failure to diagnose, surgical errors, improper medication, or inadequate follow-up care. Each of these forms can have significant and long-lasting effects on your life. 

If you are unsure if you have a valid claim, contact a malpractice attorney like Spencer Calahan to discuss your next steps in seeking justice in Louisiana. 

Understanding the Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations is the legal timeframe for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. In Louisiana, this timeframe is governed by Louisiana Revised Statutes section 9:5628. Key points include:

  • One-Year Limit: You must file a claim no more than one year from the negligent action or omission date.
  • Discovery Rule: If the malpractice is not immediately apparent, you must file a claim within one year after discovering the injury. 
  • Statute of Repose: Regardless of when the malpractice was discovered, all claims must be filed within three years of the date of the alleged malpractice.

Failing to file within these timeframes can result in the dismissal of your case and the loss of your right to seek compensation. However, this time is paused during the medical review panel process

Exceptions to the Standard Statute of Limitations

Certain exceptions can extend the statute of limitations in some cases. For example, 

  • Discovery of Harm: If the injury is discovered much later, the one-year limit applies from the date of discovery.
  • Continues Receiving Care: If the patient continues receiving medical care, the timeframe may be altered. Additionally, if the medical professional manipulates or conceals the malpractice, the timeframe for the statute of limitations may be paused. 

These exceptions ensure victims have a fair opportunity to seek justice, even if the malpractice wasn’t immediately evident.

Real-Life Examples 

Consider the case of a patient who underwent surgery but later discovered a surgical instrument had been left inside them. Initially unaware of the malpractice, they only experienced symptoms years later. 

Thanks to the discovery rule, they could file a claim within one year of discovering the issue despite the surgery occurring years prior. However, regardless of the discovery date, Louisiana victims must file within three years. 

Is There an Extended Deadline for Medical Malpractice Claims for Minors in Louisiana?

Unfortunately, while many states have special rules for medical malpractice involving minors, Louisiana is not among them. In Louisiana, the statute of limitations is strictly three years maximum. Regardless of the circumstances, legal action must be initiated within this timeframe. The rigid nature of this law can pose significant challenges for families seeking justice, mainly when the effects of malpractice may not be immediately apparent. 

Even in the case of minors, the strict timeline regarding medical malpractice further demonstrates why it is important to contact an attorney to review your Louisiana case as soon as possible. 

Why Early Consultation With a Malpractice Attorney Is Crucial in Louisiana

Understanding the complexities of medical malpractice claims and the statute of limitations can be daunting. This is why contacting a malpractice attorney as soon as possible is essential:

  • Timely Evaluation: An attorney can quickly evaluate the merits of your case, helping ensure that you file within the legal timeframe.
  • Thorough Investigation: Early consultation allows for a comprehensive investigation while evidence remains fresh and accessible.
  • Navigating Legal Complexities: An experienced attorney can guide you through the intricacies of Louisiana’s medical malpractice laws, including the medical review panel process.

Do You Need a Medical Malpractice Attorney in Louisiana? 

The statute of limitations is a critical factor in medical malpractice cases, and understanding it can be the key to securing the compensation you deserve. If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical negligence in Louisiana, don’t wait — contact Spencer Calahan for a free consultation today. We are here to provide the dedicated, compassionate legal support you deserve.
Reach out to Spencer Calahan Injury Lawyers today. Call us at 225-387-2323 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation. Don’t delay — time is of the essence in medical malpractice cases.