This is the length of time in which you must file a medical malpractice lawsuit or a dental malpractice lawsuit, allowing for all possible extensions we have listed in earlier blog posts. Most states use the
Hybrid Rule under which a medical malpractice lawsuit or a dental malpractice lawsuit must be started within a certain length of time after the time of accrual – no matter what. Unless you have a really good excuse, such as deliberate concealment of malpractice by the physician or dentist, you cannot sue for any reason after the absolute time limit has passed. This is simply an application of the legal principle mentioned earlier, that a person should not have to spend the rest of his life worrying that someone might come after him for a mistake made in the distant past.
Other states use a system known as Balancing the Equities in deciding whether
to grant an extension of the time limit. It means that the judge can consider all the factors, which might have justified a delay over the time limit and decide whether Equity (fair play) entitles you to more time. However, you must be prepared to show good reason why you are entitled to an extension, and it will usually be granted only if the delay was caused by something totally beyond your control.