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Time Limits For Cauda Equina Negligence Claims

If your cauda equina syndrome was negligently managed, leaving you with complications that could have been avoided, you will be entitled to pursue a medical negligence claim.

However, it is important not to delay in starting the legal process, as you only have three years to make a claim. If you defer for too long, you may run out of time, meaning you will not be able to obtain the compensation you will undoubtedly need.

Time limits when making a claim

All personal injury and clinical negligence claims are subject to the Act of Limitation. This means that a claimant only has three years from the date of the incident to bring a claim in the courts.

Therefore it is necessary to work out when the date of negligence occurred. With something such as a wrong amputation, this will be extremely obvious, as the negligent act happened on the day of the surgery.

With cauda equina claims it is a little more confusing, but generally it will be the date on which your condition could have been diagnosed, and yet medical professionals failed to detect the problem. Alternatively it may be the date urgent decompression surgery should have been performed, but there was a negligent delay.

So if doctors should have diagnosed your cauda equina syndrome on 1 January 2013, you will have until 1 January 2016 to bring a claim. This is known as your date of limitation. If you fail to begin legal action in advance of this date, you will have run out of time and you will not be able to pursue a claim – even if you have a strong case.

Exceptions to the rule

There are a few exceptions to the three year rule. Firstly, some may be able to rely on a later date of knowledge. This means you only discovered there had been an act of negligence months or years after it occurred. Secondly, minors are not subject to limitation. So if a patient under the age of 18 suffers medical negligence, he or she will have until their 21st birthday to bring a claim. Thirdly, there will be no time limits whatsoever for those who lack mental capacity.

Speak to a solicitor without delay

If you think you could be entitled to compensation for cauda equina syndrome, it is vital not to hesitate when seeking expert legal advice, or you could run out of time. To speak to a solicitor, contact us at the Cauda Equina Solicitors today.

Please call us free on 0800 234 3300, from a mobile click to call 01275 334030 or complete our Free Online Enquiry for a no cost, no obligation opinion.

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