Can I Sue for a Malpractice Injury Long After Its Discovery?

Malpractice is a serious problem in healthcare. If a medical professional breaches their duty of care to you by failing to disclose important information about a procedure or test or by not following best practice procedures, then you may be able to sue them for malpractice. Under New Mexico law, you have three years from the date of malpractice to file your claim. If you believe you have been hurt by the negligence of a medical professional, call a New Mexico medical malpractice attorney today.

Fraudulent Concealment

In some instances, exceptions are made in the case of fraudulent concealment, an act where the defendant hid the alleged negligence from the patient or had information related to the discovery of negligence, which they did not reveal. The plaintiff, in this case, must show that they did not know nor could have reasonably discovered the cause of the action during the statutory period.

What Is the Discovery Rule?

In many states, the time limit to file a medical malpractice claim can be extended by the discovery rule. Under this rule, the statute of limitations does not begin to run until you have or reasonably should have discovered your injury. This rule often comes into play with conditions that cause problems over time, such as a surgical sponge left inside the body. 

All of that said, New Mexico does not follow the discovery rule. As a result, you have three years from this date to file a personal injury medical malpractice claim. This also includes product liability claims, such as the taking of dangerous pharmaceuticals or receipt of a defective prosthesis.

Get in Touch with a Knowledgeable Medical Malpractice Lawyer

To learn more about your rights along these lines, you should talk to a personal liability attorney immediately about your concerns. They can help you sift through the information so you can plan a strategy for your case and receive an equitable settlement.

Medical malpractice can happen under various circumstances. These events may include misdiagnosis, not following up on testing, not being thorough about a patient's care, prescribing the wrong medicine, or making a surgical error.

According to ScienceDirect, surgery represents a high-risk medical specialty - one where errors happen regularly. Errors may range from operating on the wrong body part or even the wrong patient to leaving medical devices inside a patient. In some instances, doctors fail to follow accepted and standard medical practices before, during, and after the surgery process.

The Insurance System and Medical Malpractice

Again, to receive the damages in a medical malpractice claim, you’ll need an attorney’s help, as they understand, as well, how medical malpractice insurance works - something that enables them to negotiate claims and settlements in favor of the plaintiff. 

Doctors may choose from two types of malpractice insurance - “claims-made” and “occurrence” policies. A claims-made policy only offers protection if the insurance is in effect when an incident takes place or when a claimant files a lawsuit. 

For this reason, some “claims-made” policies include coverage known as a “tail,” which extends the protection for a certain time after a policy ends. However, this extension is not provided as part of the original insurance plan. 

By contrast, “occurrence” policies cover a claim for events that happened during the coverage period, even if a claimant makes a claim after the coverage ends. However, this protection is much more expensive than “claims-made” insurance policies. Therefore, most doctors or health care providers opt for “claims-made” plans.

When filing a medical malpractice claim, a lot of factors play into submitting a lawsuit. That is why you need to consult with a medical malpractice attorney - someone who understands how medical malpractice works and how to navigate this part of the legal system.

Contact a New Mexico Medical Malpractice Attorney Today

If you suspect you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice, you should contact a lawyer today. You may be able to claim damages for the resulting medical costs, pain and suffering, and other losses. Call our office today or email [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with a New Mexico medical malpractice lawyer today. Our attorneys are licensed in D.C., New Mexico, Texas, and Michigan.


Richardson, Texas - Office hours and special appointments
Las Cruces, New Mexico - By appointment only

Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule in Richardson

Monday - Friday:

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Saturday, Sunday: