Recognizing the need to reduce and eliminate surgical errors, the Joint Commission published a universal protocol for preventing surgical errors in 2003. This three-step protocol requires medical providers to complete a verification process, to mark the surgical site, and to perform a timeout prior to the surgery to verify that all the information and surgical plans are correct.

Despite this new protocol, surgical errors do still occur sometimes, and patients still suffer and die as a result of these errors. Fortunately, there are also still plenty of medical malpractice attorneys available to help you recover after a surgical error. To recoup your damages from such an incident, your best option may be to seek out a seasoned Troy surgical error lawyer for help.

Lawsuit Filing Deadlines

Like all states, New York puts a time limit on how long surgical error patients have to file a civil claim. Often called the statute of limitations, this law gives potential plaintiffs two years and six months from the date of the error—or the date on which they would have reasonably discovered the error—to file their case.

Foreign Body Exception

One exception to the statute of limitations for malpractice claims in Troy is for surgical errors involving a foreign body being left inside of the patient, such as a sponge or a surgical tool. Some states call this is the discovery rule, but the rule in New York only applies to very specific cases. In these cases, patients are given one year from the date of discovery of the foreign body to file their case.

Minor Exception

If the surgical error victim is a minor at the time of the injury, the law provides them with up to ten years, or until their 18th birthday plus two years and six months, to file a surgical error lawsuit. However, a Troy surgical error lawyer may file a lawsuit on their behalf by their parents or legal guardians prior to their 18th birthday if they wish.

Certificate of Merit Requirement

As explained in New York Civil Practice Law & Rules §3012-a, when an attorney files a lawsuit, they must also file a certificate of merit. If this certificate cannot be filed at the same time as the claim due to an approaching statute of limitations deadline, it must be filed within 90 days of the claim being filed.

The certificate of merit requirement in New York is meant to deter frivolous lawsuits. This certificate states that the plaintiff’s surgical error attorney has consulted with at least one medical professional who believes the surgical error lawsuit has merit. If the attorney is unable to do this, they must instead certify that they have attempted to consult with at least three different licensed medical providers.

Talk to a Troy Surgical Error Attorney

Being a victim of a surgical error can be a frightening and devastating time in your life. You may be worried about your medical condition, your finances, and how both will affect you in the long term. You may also be experiencing pain and suffering or mental anguish.

You do not have to face these worries alone. Whether you had a foreign body left in you, had the wrong site operated on, or received other negligent surgical care that led to an injury, you deserve justice.

A compassionate Troy surgical error lawyer could work with you to pursue the compensation you deserve. Reach out for legal assistance today to schedule a consultation and get started on your case.