Maryland Appellate Court Holds Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Barred by Statute of Limitations

If you or a loved one has been harmed by medical negligence, you could be eligible for compensation. At Arfaa Law Group, our knowledgeable Baltimore medical malpractice advocates will parse through the details of your case and provide you with an honest evaluation of your claim. We know the ins and outs of Maryland medical malpractice law, including the relevant legal time frames in your case and how serious courts are about these deadlines.

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals recently affirmed summary judgment granted by a lower court to a medical malpractice defendant based on the statute of limitations. The plaintiff and his wife filed a medical malpractice claim in November 2013 against the University of Maryland Medical System Corp. and the University of Maryland Medical Center (collectively UMMC), alleging that UMMC failed to properly treat an MRSA infection in his leg. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the lawsuit had been filed after the statute of limitations had expired.

The specifics of the case are as follows. On July 3, 2010, the plaintiff was diagnosed with a serious fragmented break of his left femur and open wound on his left thigh. His underwent surgery in which bolts were screwed into his bones. A few days later, he was tested for MRSA and the test results came back negative. On July 12 of that same year, he tested positive for MRSA and was placed into isolation. On July 19, 2010, he was discharged to a rehabilitation center. On July 27, 2010, he was sent back to UMMC. On July 29, UMMC sent him back to the rehabilitation center where he was treated for the MRSA infection and remained for a few weeks. In June of 2012, the plaintiff was admitted to the hospital where tests showed a heavy growth of MRSA infection. From that point onward until 2013, he had issues with the infection until he had to have a total knee replacement.

Under Maryland law, a plaintiff must file a medical malpractice lawsuit in civil court three years from the date the injury was discovered or five years from the time the injury was committed, whichever is earlier. It is important to note that before an action can accrue, the plaintiff must have either actual or constructive notice of the injury.

According to the appeals court, it is undisputed that the plaintiff had actual and constructive notice about the infection from July 12, 2010 to July 29 of that year since he was explicitly told that he had it, was put into isolation as a result and treated at UMMC and the rehabilitation center for it. Thus, by the time the plaintiff filed his claim in November of 2013, the three year statute of limitations had expired. The Court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that the continuing course of treatment rule had tolled the statute of limitations until 2012. Thus, the defendant’s motion for summary judgment was granted and the lower court’s judgment affirmed.

Reach an Experienced Baltimore Medical Malpractice Attorney

If you or someone close to you has been injured due to a medical professional’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. At Arfaa Law Group, our experienced Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys can examine the facts of your case and help you file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. Our goal is to help you get the maximum possible compensation in your case so you can move on with your life. Please call us today at 410-889-1850 or contact us online.

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