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What is the time limit for making a medical negligence claim?

The limit for initiating a claim for compensation following medical negligence is three years from the date of the incident. In some circumstances, the damage caused by medical negligence might not be immediately apparent, and so claimants are eligible to have the three year time limit commence from the date at which the symptoms of the damage caused by the negligence became apparent.

Also, if the medical negligence victim was a child at the time of the incident, their three year time limit begins from the date of their 18th birthday, allowing them until the age of 21 to commence a claim. If the person affected by an act of medical negligence is suffering from a mental illness, the three year time limit may begin from the date of their recovery.

If clinical negligence results in the death of a patient, the victim’s family are eligible to make a claim. They have three years from the date of their relative’s death to initiate their claim.

The Limitation Act 1980 summarises that the three year time limit begins from a patient’s date of knowledge. The date of knowledge is defined as when a person was aware of or ought to have known:

  • That their injuries were significant; and
  • That their injury was at least partially attributable to the error or negligent treatment that they received; and
  • The identity of the defendant

There may be mitigating circumstances to individual cases which will impact upon the time limits for initiating a claim. Your solicitor will be able to confirm eligibility once they have assessed the details of your case.

Have you been affected by clinical negligence?

If you have been injured or suffered an illness that was caused by negligence on the part of a medical professional, you could be entitled to make a claim. Whether the negligence was at the hands of a doctor, a nurse, a dentist or any other healthcare worker, our experienced solicitors can help you every step of the way.

To receive a free case assessment and find out if you are eligible to pursue a claim for compensation, feel free to contact us. This initial consultation is completely free and provided without any obligation to proceed any further. Not only will you find out if you have a valid claim, but you will also be able to ask any questions or raise any concerns you may have about making a claim.