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The statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases in Wisconsin

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Sec. 893.55 of the Wisconsin Statutes answers the question on when a lawsuit must be commenced in the State of Wisconsin, to protect a person’s right to proceed with their medical malpractice case. Section (1m) specifically states as follow:

Except as provided by subs. (2) and (3), an action to recover damages for injury arising from any treatment or operation performed by, or from any omission by, a person who is a health care provider, regardless of the theory on which the action is based, shall be commenced within the later of:

(a) Three years from the date of the injury, or

(b) One year from the date the injury was discovered, or, in the exercise of reasonable diligence should have been discovered, except that an action may not be commenced under this paragraph more than 5 years from the date of the act or omission.

The 5 year limit in sub. (1) (b) applies only to claims brought under the “discovery rule” of sub. (1) (b) and not to claims brought under the “injury rule of accrual” in sub. (1) (a). The continuum of negligent treatment doctrine modifies the 3 year limit of par. (a) and is unaffected by sub. (1) (b), which comes into play only when a plaintiff claims that, because of a delayed discovery of an injury, he or she is entitled to file an action beyond the 3 year time limit in sub. (1) (a)., Forbes v. Stoeckl 303 Wis. 2d 425 (Court of Appeals 2007).

Have questions about a possible medical malpractice case in Wisconsin? Call one  of our attorneys to answer your questions.

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