Medical Malpractice in Nevada
Statute of Limitations: 3 Years (until the age of 10 for minors), 2 Years in Cases of Sterility
Discovery: 1 Year from Discovery
Liability Rules: Modified Comparative Negligence
Limits: $350,000 for non-economic damages
What You Should Know
A medical malpractice or medical liability case is a civil claim filed by a patient in pain or who has been injured by cause of a physician or health care provider due to negligence or omission. In short, if a patient is harmed before, during or after treatment, or due to lack of treatment, they may qualify in filing for a medical malpractice case. Each state has their own set of time limits and exceptions or rules on when and how a medical malpractice case may be filed. Below we cover a general outline of what you need to know in the case of filing a medical malpractice in the state of Nevada.
Statute of Limitations
A Statute of Limitations is a deadline or time period in which you have to file a medical malpractice case. In Nevada, a patient has three years to file a medical malpractice case.
Before we get into any of the exceptions of filing a civil claim, let us first cover what must first be established or able to be proven in order to file a claim:
- The physician or health care provider owed the given patient any ‘duty’. For example, further treatment, alternate care, guidance, etc.
- The standard of care for the given illness or ailment failed to be met. Each surgery or treatment has a set of conditions, or standards, that must be met in order to be considered acceptable, or at the most basic level, complete.
- There is a compensable injury. Unfortunately not all injuries are compensable. A worst case scenario for medical malpractice is fatality. However, if there are reconcilable damage to the patient that can be rectified to some degree, that will help in filing a claim.
- Lastly, not only does it have to be proven that the standard of care was breached, but also that it was the cause of harm or damage to the patient. For example, if indeed a doctor did neglect the standard of care for a given treatment, but that was not the cause of harm or injury to the patient, it may not be enough to open a case.
Exception and the Discovery Rule
There are some exceptions to the three year statute of limitations. For any brain damage or birth defects, minors have until the age of 10 to file a claim. In cases of sterility, two years is the limit. The discovery rule in Nevada is one year. The discovery rule is a rule in which allows patients to file a claim within one year of discovering they were neglected by their health care provider or did not receive standard of care.
In almost all states there needs to be an expert on the particular treatment that did not meet standard of care in order to prove so. In other words, there needs to be someone that specializes in the treatment that was neglected in some manner in order to prove that it was the fault of the treating physician or health care provider. The expert cannot simply be someone that is knowledgeable on the matter, though. They must be an active or practicing professional.
This third-party opinion and input is required so that it can be determined if the pain or harm is either solely at the fault of the treating physician or health care provider, or if it may be in some part due to negligence of the patient. The patient may be partially or fully at fault if they refused recommended pre- or post-treatment care, or if they were properly diagnosed and did nothing about it.
There is no cap on how much damage can be reconciled or compensated in Nevada for economic damage, such as medical treatment, lost earnings or inability to work. However, there is a cap on non-economic damage. For non-economic damage in Nevada, the cap is $350,000. Non-economic damage may be loss of enjoyment, anxiety, pain and suffering, and more. Essentially, it is quality of life damage
As you can see, there is a lot of information necessary to understand before even filing a medical malpractice case in Nevada. It is, no doubt, a daunting endeavor; however, receiving just compensation or rectifying damage for the sake of you or your family’s health should be a top priority. It is best to seek an experienced team of attorneys to assist in filing a civil claim such as medical malpractice.
How Can We Help You?
If you or a loved one have been injured in the state of Nevada, contact us at 432.570.1919 or email us using the form below for your free, no-obligation consultation. The Buckingham Barrera Law Firm has helped thousands of people in multiple states get the compensation they deserve for their injuries.