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Hospital Attempts to Get Case Dismissed Because of Statute of Limitations

Posted in Firm News

In a recent case, the Supreme Court of Mississippi affirmed a lower court’s decision not to dismiss a case against a hospital because of a statute of limitations issue. A woman died at a hospital in June 2007, and in October of that year her beneficiaries provided a notice of claim against the hospital with the county chancery and county attorney. The beneficiary did not provide any notice to the hospital’s CEO at this point. The following year, the beneficiary sued the hospital and at that point provided the hospital’s CEO with the complaint.

The hospital’s attorney moved to dismiss the complaint. They argued that the plaintiff did not follow legal protocol and provide the hospital with notice of the suit, and therefore the suit was now barred by the statute of limitations. The Supreme Court found that when a plaintiff files a complaint, the statute of limitations is tolled, and the presuit notice was sufficient because the suit was filed within a year of the second complaint.

Importance of Statute of Limitations in New Mexico
Every state has certain enumerated rules and regulations regarding when specific civil lawsuits can be brought. These time limits are referred to as the statute of limitations, and they must be strictly adhered to. In New Mexico, the time period on the statute of limitations begins to run when the claim arises. Sometimes this is when the accident occurred or when an injury is discovered.

In New Mexico, there is a different statute of limitations depending on the type of crime or incident that occurred. For example, personal injury cases must be brought within three years of the accident. The same goes for product liability cases. In certain medical malpractice cases, the lawsuit must be brought within a certain time from when the malpractice was discovered. For example, if a tool was left in an individual’s body during surgery, it may not be discovered for a few years. In those situations, there is a possibility that the statute of limitations would be tolled to reflect the plaintiff’s lack of knowledge of the injury.

It is important to note that these laws can be changed at any time, and thus lawsuits may need to be restructured or reevaluated. It is highly recommended that you immediately contact an attorney after being involved in an accident.

Have You Been Injured Because of Another Person’s Negligence?

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed because of another’s negligence, you may consider bringing a personal injury, wrongful death, or medical malpractice case against that individual or entity. As the case above illustrates, these types of lawsuits are regulated by strictly enforced statute of limitations and pre-suit requirements. In order to ensure that your case not only has merits but will be heard by a judge or jury, it is suggested that you contact an experienced attorney. You may be entitled to monetary compensation for your injuries, and you don’t want to risk the loss of that because of time restraints. Contact one of the dedicated and experienced attorneys at the Fine Law Firm today at 505-889-FINE to schedule your free initial consultation.

More Blog Posts:

Sleeping Driver Responsible for Fatal Lea County Accident, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, November 9, 2014.

Investigation Continues into Semi-Truck Crash that Killed Four Texas Student Athletes, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, October 13, 2014.