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Shapiro & Appleton

The questions on this page were answered by our team of lawyers. The questions are categorized by practice area such as car wrecks, medical malpractice, traumatic brain injuries, etc. If you have specific questions about your situation, contact our firm to set up a free consultation with an actual attorney.

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  • My child was born with a serious and permanent injury. Do I have a personal injury case?

    Yes, you may very well have a viable personal injury or medical malpractice case. It depends on the specific circumstances of your child's injury. If your child was hurt during birth, you may have a medical negligence case against the doctor who oversaw the birth. Our North Carolina personal injury law firm has handled serious birth injury cases where a child suffered a brachial plexus injury (a.k.a. shoulder dystocia). This was a permanent injury caused during the birthing process. We took the case to trial and secured a multi-million dollar jury verdict

    We work tirelessly in these cases since some of the most tragic, heartbreaking injuries can happen during a birth. In most cases, both the baby and the parents have the right to pursue financial restitution. 

  • My doctor performed a routine surgery on me and during the procedure, henicked my bowel. Do I have a medical malpracticecase?

    Depending on the type of surgery your doctor was performing and how quickly the doctor realized he nicked your bowel, you might have a case.  You should call our office for a free consultation. 

  • What questions should I ask when selecting a doctor or surgeon?

    While you can never find out every small detail about your doctor or surgeon, there are a few things you can do to make a better informed decision. First and foremost, ask questions. For example...

    Where did you go to medical school?
    What American Board of Medical Specialty Certifications do you have?
    How long have you been practicing?
    Are there any disciplinary actions outstanding against you?

    All of these are perfectly legitimate questions to ask. Do not hesitate. If you'd like to learn more about surgical safety, medical negligence and ways not to become a victim, download our free report.

  • Is there a medical malpractice "damage cap" in North Carolina?

    Unfortunately, yes. The North Carolina state legislature passed a damage cap of $500,000 for "noneconomic damages".  Noneconomic damages compensate a victim for “pain, suffering, emotional distress, loss of consortium, inconvenience, and any other non-pecuniary compensatory damages.”

    It's an unfair and illogical law that punishes victims. Nevertheless, it is the law of North Carolina.

  • What is the North Carolina (NC) statute of limitations for a personal injury in a medical malpractice case?

    First, always consult a lawyer for specific legal advice as this is only a guide and never rely on such a guide for an important legal decision.  In North Carolina, there is a three-year statute of limitations on personal injuries arising from car accidents and this limitation period usually applies to medical malpractice cases. Again, there are exceptions and specific legal device should be sought out.

    Medical malpractice actions must be commenced within three years of the act or omission giving rise to the injury, or within two years of the date of discovery, to a maximum of four years following the date of the act or omission. In cases involving wrongful death, the limitations period is usually two years. Medical malpractice actions for objects left inside the body may be commenced within one year of the date of discovery, to a maximum of ten years after the date of the act giving rise to the injury. Under North Carolina law, a minor must usually file suit within one year of his or her eighteenth birthday.

    One of the many reasons the lawyer should be consulted is that each state has special rules on what is usually called "the discovery rule" which essentially means sometimes a statute of limitations may be extended if the person could not reasonably discover that they had a case. Also persons who are “incompetent” (states have legal definitions on what this means) or under some type of (legal) disability, may have additional time to bring a lawsuit under certain state rules.

    Also, which state's statute of limitations applies to a particular type of personal injury is not always clear, for example, if a resident of North Carolina suffers an injury in Virginia, which state’s statute of limitation that applies may be complicated and depend on the precise types of claims that apply to the particular case. . It may depend on where a lawyer chooses to file a personal injury lawsuit. So, depending upon what type of personal injury action, whether under a state law or federal law or statute, as well as where the action is going to be filed in court, may have bearing on what statute of limitations applies, as well as what other exceptions to the statute of limitations may allow a personal injury victim/claimant to extend the period by which a suit may be filed.

    In complicated situations this is a very important legal determination that should only be made by a qualified, experienced, personal injury lawyer. This is another reason that you should obtain a confidential, free, initial consultation with a personal injury lawyer with our law firm if you are uncertain about the statute of limitations that may apply to a particular claim/case or personal injury situation.

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