If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, the last thing you want to think about is the possibility that you might be the victim of medical malpractice during treatment. But what if something worse happens? What if you’re not diagnosed with cancer that’s already eating away at your body? That’s the sad story for many New York residents, and Governor Cuomo and a number of legislative leaders have finally come together to address the problem. The Lavern’s Law Medical Malpractice Bill will increase the time you have to file a lawsuit after a doctor fails to diagnose your cancer.
This revision to old laws was important because a number of victims of this egregious form of medical malpractice were left without any means of compensation for themselves or family members left behind. That’s because before Lavern’s Law, the statute of limitations clock started ticking the moment you were misdiagnosed as opposed to the moment you learned about the misdiagnosis. In other words, you might only realize the mistake after the statute of limitations had completely elapsed. The law doesn’t always help the victims.
Lavern Wilkinson was a 41-year-old Brooklyn resident whose doctors failed to diagnose a growing tumor in one of her lungs. She died in 2013. Even though she discovered the mistake before she passed away, the statute of limitations had already elapsed. That’s adding salt to the wound.
The old law only provided you with a measly fifteen months after the misdiagnosis to make your medical malpractice lawsuit. Lavern’s Law will grant victims of malpractice a much more reasonable two and a half years after they realize the misdiagnosis occurred. That might not be much consolation for past victims or family members whose loved ones have passed away due to medical malpractice, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction.
When you’re the victim of medical malpractice, state law provides you a legal avenue in order to acquire meaningful compensation for bills incurred, physical and psychological pain and suffering, and any income you miss out on because you’re unable to work or maintain the same standard of productivity as before.
If you believe you’re the victim of malpractice, then contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible. Even though the new law might provide you with more time to make your claim, it can damage your case if you delay too long.