Medical Malpractice:

Florida

State: Florida

Link to State Law: Florida Statutes

The following information is meant to be a guide. It is believed to be accurate at the time of authorship but may not reflect the most current data due to changes in the law. If you require legal assistance or guidance with regard to Florida state law, contact an experienced attorney.

Statute of Limitations: For persons eight and older, the statute of limitations is 2 years from the date the injury was or should have been discovered but no more than 4 years from the date of the injury. If fraud, concealment, or intentional misrepresentation prevented the discovery within 4 years, an additional 2 years is allowed from the date of discovery; however, this may not exceed 7 years following the injury. Those under eight must file by their eighth birthday or within the standard statute of limitations, whichever is longer. (§95.11)

Minimum Qualifications of Expert Witnesses: Except in cases when negligence is obvious, even to non-medical persons, a testimony from an expert medical malpractice witness is needed. To be an expert, one must be a licensed physician in the same practice area as the defendant or have practiced for at least five years preceding the time of the claim. (§766.102)

Limitations on Monetary Damages: The limit for non-economic medical malpractice damages is $500,000. In the case of death or permanent vegetative state, non-economic damages must not exceed $1,000,000. (§766.118) Punitive damages are limited to three times the economic damages or $500,000. If deliberate attempt to harm is proved, there is no limit on punitive damages. (§768.73)

Limitations on Attorney Fees: Attorney fees are limited to 30% of the first $250,000 and 10% of any award over $250,000. (Determined on a Florida Ballot, 2004 Election Constitutional Amendment)

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