Medical Malpractice Laws in Massachusetts

Medical Malpractice Laws in Massachusetts

Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider’s negligence or misconduct causes injury or harm to a patient. In Massachusetts, medical malpractice cases are governed by state law, which sets out the standards of care that healthcare providers must meet and the procedures for bringing a malpractice claim.Medical Malpractice Laws in Massachusetts

Some of the key provisions of Massachusetts medical malpractice laws include:

  1. Statute of limitations: In Massachusetts, a medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within three years of the date of the injury or within three years of the date that the injury should have been discovered. However, there are some exceptions to this rule, such as cases involving minors or cases where the injury was not immediately apparent.
  2. Expert testimony: In a medical malpractice case, the plaintiff must present expert testimony from a qualified healthcare professional to establish the standard of care that the defendant healthcare provider should have followed and to show that the defendant’s actions or omissions breached that standard of care.
  3. Damage caps: Massachusetts does not have caps on the amount of damages that can be awarded in a medical malpractice case. However, there are limits on the amount of damages that can be awarded for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.

How To File a Medical Malpractice Claim in MA

Filing a medical malpractice claim in Massachusetts can be a complex process, and it’s recommended to seek the assistance of an experienced attorney. However, here are the general steps involved in filing a medical malpractice claim in Massachusetts:

  1. Obtain Medical Records: Gather your medical records related to the treatment in question, including all relevant test results, diagnoses, and treatment plans.
  2. Consult with a Lawyer: It’s highly recommended to consult with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer who can help you evaluate your case and determine whether or not you have a valid claim.
  3. Obtain Expert Opinion: In Massachusetts, you must have an expert opinion from a qualified medical professional who can support your claim that the medical provider was negligent. Your lawyer can assist you in finding an expert witness who can provide a professional opinion on your case.
  4. Pre-Suit Process: Before filing a lawsuit, Massachusetts law requires you to engage in a pre-suit investigation period which includes sending a notice of intent to sue to the healthcare provider that is being accused of malpractice.
  5. File a Lawsuit: If the pre-suit investigation doesn’t result in a settlement, you may file a lawsuit in court.
  6. Discovery: The discovery process allows both parties to gather evidence related to the case, including witness statements, medical records, and depositions.
  7. Settlement Negotiations: During the course of the litigation, both parties may engage in settlement negotiations. Your lawyer can represent you in settlement negotiations with the healthcare provider and their insurance company.
  8. Trial: If the case goes to trial, a judge or jury will hear the evidence and decide whether or not the healthcare provider was negligent.

It’s important to note that the statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases in Massachusetts is generally three years from the date of the injury or discovery of the injury. It is essential to file your claim within this time frame to avoid losing the right to compensation.

It’s always a good idea to consult with a medical malpractice lawyer if you have questions about medical malpractice laws in Massachusetts or if you believe that you have been the victim of medical malpractice. An experienced attorney can help you understand your legal rights and options and can represent you in court if necessary. Contact Sbrogna, Brunelle & Donius at 508-809-7555.

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    We're Joining Tetzel Law!

    We are excited to let you know that effective January 1, 2024, Attorneys Kevin Donius and Roger Brunelle of Sbrogna, Brunelle & Donius, LLP, along with our paralegals Nicole LeBlanc and Denise Geoghan, have joined forces with Tetzel Law, a Boston based firm specializing in cases involving personal injury, medical malpractice, nursing home negligence and abuse, and construction accidents.  We encourage you to visit Tetzel Law’s website at to learn more about the firm.  With Tetzel Law, we now have offices in Boston, Worcester, Woburn and Hingham.

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