Is There a Statute of Limitations on Medical Malpractice in Kansas City?
All lawsuits filed in Kansas City civil courts are subject to a statute of limitations, or a deadline before you must file your lawsuit. If you do not file your claim within this timeframe, the courts will refuse to hear your case – and these rules extend to medical malpractice cases as well. Different states have different statutes of limitations for different types of claims – and since Kansas City is located in two separate states, understanding this deadline can be a challenge.
Kansas or Missouri: Which Statute Do You Follow?
Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor, surgeon, nurse, or other healthcare worker commits an act of medical negligence or omission, resulting in injury to you. Many different actions can constitute medical malpractice, including the following.
- Failure to provide an accurate diagnosis
- Failure to provide a diagnosis at all
- Prescribing the wrong medication
- Committing an error during surgery
- Prescribing the wrong medication dosage
- Giving an improper dosage of anesthesia
- Infections that a patient develops in a hospital
- Birth injuries and negligence-related defects
If you believe you are the victim of medical malpractice in Kansas City, you have the right to file a lawsuit against the doctor or other medical professional responsible for your injuries. To do so, you must first understand the statutory rules in the state where you suffered the injury. If you live in the Kansas side of Kansas City and suffered the malpractice in a hospital on the Missouri side, you must follow the Missouri statute of limitations, and vice versa.
Kansas Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations
In the state of Kansas, you have two years to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the medical professionals responsible for your injuries. The deadline usually falls on the two-year anniversary of when the malpractice occurred – but in some cases, you may not realize you were the victim of medical malpractice until later.
In these situations, you have two years from the date on which you could have reasonably known about the malpractice to file your lawsuit. This date of discovery can vary based on your circumstances – for example, if the doctor misdiagnosed your cancer symptoms as another condition, the date that you discovered the cancer would be the date on which your statute of limitations begins.
However, you cannot file your claim more than four years past the date that the malpractice occurred. As soon as you realize that you are the victim of medical malpractice, contact your lawyer to begin the filing process.
Missouri Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations
Missouri has similar statute of limitations rules as Kansas when it comes to medical malpractice, with a few key differences. First, you have two years from the date on which the malpractice occurred to file your lawsuit in civil court.
However, if the malpractice involved a surgeon leaving a foreign object inside your body or a failure to inform you of your test results, you have two years from the date that you discovered or could have reasonably discovered your injuries.
Missouri also has an overall deadline known as the statute of repose that states that you cannot file your lawsuit more than 10 years after the malpractice occurred, even if you didn’t discover the mistake within this time period. In addition, if you were a minor at the time of the malpractice, you must file your lawsuit by your 20th birthday.
If you are the victim of medical malpractice in Kansas City, it is important to contact a medical malpractice lawyer as soon as you discover your injuries. Waiting to file your lawsuit can lead to the statute of limitations running out, and the court will refuse to hear your case. If you have not done so already, contact a Kansas City medical malpractice attorney today to schedule your free consultation.