How long after an incident can I still sue for malpractice?
Question Details: I discovered major bone loss in my jaw preventing me from implants and soon the inability to adequately wear dentures 6 months ago when I going to get implants and had an X-ray done. However, my actual treatment was done 3 1/2 years ago of full extractions and dentures. And then a second dentist just told me that my previous X-rays from 8 years ago indicated bone loss making further bone loss upon extraction foreseeable and preventable. Also, another dentist says that he would have postponed the extractions until which time I could get implants. Would this be a negligence case and would it be barred by the statute of repose at this point?
The three-year statute of repose may bar a lawsuit at this point. While there is an exception if you can prove that it was effectively impossible to have discovered the harm until now (could not have been discovered even with "reasonable diligence"), you write that you discovered the bone loss 6 months ago, or more or less within the statute of repose. (If the procedurew was 3 1/2 years ago but you discovered the bone loss 1/2 year [6 months] ago, you then either within, at, or just beyond the statutory period). Having not taken action right away when you discovered the loss, it may now be too late, since you can't delay after finding the cause of action.