What is it about medical malpractice lawsuits that scream “money!” to some people? If you were aware of the laws and rules in North Carolina about medical malpractice, you might think seriously about your particular claims and case potential.
“There is no limit to compensatory damages and a $250,000 limit to punitive damages with regard to medical malpractice lawsuits in North Carolina,” says Thomas Bumgardner, attorney with the Bumgardner Law Office. “There is also a third type of lawsuit that has no limit and this one is referred to as non-economic damages.”
Types of NC Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
- Compensatory damages – this is money to cover costs like past, present and future medical expenses to treat the injury, as well as lost wages. There is no limit to compensatory damages.
- Non-economic damages – this can be money for the pain and suffering you endured because of the injury. There is no limit to non-economic damages.
- Punitive damages – this can be money that you might receive by punishing a healthcare professional for reckless behavior to purposely cause you injury or harm. There is a $250,000 limit to punitive damages in North Carolina.
“In general, patients in North Carolina have a statute of limitations of up to three years from the date of the treatment that caused the injury or within one year from when the injury was or should have been discovered,” says Bumgardner. “This is interesting, in cases where there is a foreign object left inside a patient, the patient has up to one year after the discovery of the object or 10 years from the date the object was left inside.
In order for you to have a legitimate medical malpractice claim in a lawsuit in North Carolina, you must show that your physician or medical professional violated the standard of care while treating you.
“Medical malpractice laws and rules in North Carolina are here to protect patient’s rights and to aide in recovering damages should a legitimate and harmful medical event happen to their person,” adds Bumgardner.
If you know that you have been injured because of a standard of care violation, please contact Thomas Bumgardner with the Bumgardner Law Firm at (704) 870-4779 or submit our contact form.