If you suspect that a loved one experienced abuse while staying in a nursing home or were told by a loved one in a nursing home that they were abused, your world may have turned upside down. Your first action should be to call a skilled nursing home abuse attorney who could quickly sort out your case and determine what needs to be done.
One of the most critical aspects of such a civil lawsuit, however, is the Florida nursing home lawsuit statute of limitations. The statute of limitations dictates how much time a person has to file their lawsuit. Filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit after the deadline established by the statute would most likely end with your case being dismissed from court.
Deadline for Filing Florida Nursing Home Lawsuits
The deadline for filing a lawsuit is known as the statute of limitations. As per Florida Statutes §95.11, the nursing home lawsuit statute of limitations in Florida is two years. By hiring an experienced attorney, plaintiffs could help ensure that their case is filed prior to the expiration of the statute of limitations.
To preserve their legal rights, plaintiffs must file a Florida nursing home claim within two years of the date of discovery of the abuse or the date that they should have discovered the abuse. Either way, no more than four years can lapse before a claim is filed. If the plaintiff attempts to file a case after the statute of limitations has expired, the defendant may motion to dismiss the case based on the late filing.
The Importance of the Statute of Limitations for Nursing Home Civil Cases
The statute of limitations helps ensure that cases are filed promptly and are fair to the defendants. Without a statute of limitations, cases may be filed based on circumstances that happened several years ago that the defendant has no memory of, ultimately causing more harm than justice.
Additionally, evidence grows stale and can even get lost, further jeopardizing the integrity of a case. In the eyes of the court, if a claim has merit and the plaintiff believes they were wronged, they should diligently pursue it within the statute of limitations.
Collecting Evidence in Nursing Home Abuse Case
Even if a plaintiff has plenty of time before the statute of limitations expires, specific steps should be taken as soon as possible. If there are physical injuries, photographs of the injuries can be taken and presented in a claim as evidence. If there is some other type of abuse or neglect occurring, keeping a journal of what happened can help. If there are witnesses, potential plaintiffs may want to record their account of what happened.
Get an Attorney’s Help Adhering to the Nursing Home Lawsuit Statute of Limitations in Florida
Do not let the Florida nursing home lawsuit statute of limitations keep you from being able to file your case. A seasoned injury attorney could represent your interests or those of your elderly relative and help ensure that your claim is filed within the relevant deadlines set by state law. Reach out today for the legal assistance you may need.