If you or a loved one has been hurt in any type of accident or incident due to the negligence of another person or business, Florida law may allow you to recover compensation. Various time limits apply to different types of accidents and different types of victims, especially in cases involving government entities or minors. The best way to determine how long you have to bring a claim is to speak to an attorney, but these basic rules and exceptions may help you understand your rights.
Most personal injury claims must be brought within four years of the date of the injury when the victim is an adult. This limit applies to negligence claims and claims arising out of auto accidents as well as slip and fall claims. When an accident or injury results in death, the family of the deceased typically has two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim in a Florida court.
Medical malpractice claims have a more complicated rule. If your injury was noticed immediately, you have up to two years to file. However, if the injury was not discovered right away, as might be the case when an object is left in a patient during surgery, the patient has two years to file starting from the date the injury was discovered, as long as this is within four years of the date of the act that caused the injury.
Exceptions occur when victims are minors. For example, in medical malpractice actions involving children under eight years of age, plaintiffs can take advantage of whichever time period is longer — the regular limit that applies to adults or up until their eighth birthday.
Depending on the specifics of your particular situation, other rules or exceptions may apply, so it is important to contact the law firm of Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh to speak with an experienced Bradenton personal injury attorney as soon as possible after suffering an injury.