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What is the statute of limitations in Washington?

If you're hurt when a doctor is negligent or your medical care doesn't go as expected, you may be able to file a medical malpractice claim. Filing a medical malpractice case in Washington, D.C. means you have to abide by specific laws within the district. For instance, the time limitations on your case are different than in some other parts of the United States. In Washington, D.C., the statute of limitation states that you have three years from the time of an injury to file a claim against a medical provider. For minors, they can wait up to three years following their 18th birthdays, giving them the time to decide if they want to file a claim once they're legally old enough to do so.

When you decide to file a claim, you need to serve a notice of intent to the defendant. This has to be delivered within the 90 days before you file an official action with the court. If you can't give notice but have tried, the court may also accept that and give you more time to do so. Your notice should describe the injury you suffered and the losses you've faced.

Finding an attorney to work with is important during the next stage, because you need to build a strong case. It's up to you to show how medical malpractice took place, and you need to prove that the medical providers did not provide you a level of care required in today's medical community. You also need to show how a lack of care led to your injuries.

Source: FindLaw, "Your Washington, D.C. Medical Malpractice Case: The Basics," accessed March 10, 2016

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