Medical Malpractice in South Carolina: A Primer

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Many states have medical malpractice laws that are extremely stringent, due to the power of the medical lobby nationwide. South Carolina’s laws in particular are very specific, leading to complaints that the system is biased in favor of medical professionals and against injured patients. Understanding the intricate requirements for who may file a claim can go a long way toward leveling the playing field.

General Regulations

South Carolina law sets forth a statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims. A person injured by medical malpractice usually has from one to three years in which to file a claim, depending on who the claim is against.  When the time limits begins to run is specific to each case, but generally it begins on the date the injury occurred and in some instances it does not begin until the injury is discovered. However, this should not be confused with the statute of repose, which sets an outer limit on the time frame in which a claim can be brought.

The South Carolina legislature has set damage caps per defendant for non-economic damages. Non-economic damages include pain and suffering and punitive damages, or damages intended solely to punish the defendant if their conduct was extremely reckless or malicious. There is no damage cap on ‘actual’ or ‘economic’ damages, which includes medical bills and lost wages.

Another requirement for medical malpractice cases is that an expert witness affidvait must be filed when the lawsuit is filed.  The expert witness affidavit is a statement by an expert in the pertinent filed of medicine that supports the position that the standard of care was violated.

Contact a Medical Malpractice Attorney Today

If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice, we can help. Call the attorneys at Callihan & Syracuse today for a free consultation.