In order to seek compensation from a person or business for injuries caused by negligence, the aggrieved party must file suit within the applicable statute of limitations. In Massachusetts, the limitations period for medical malpractice is three years.
In cases in which a statute of repose is also in effect, the plaintiff must also file his or her case within this period. Under the Massachusetts statute of repose, the plaintiff must file suit not only within three years after the cause of action accrued (the moment at which the plaintiff knew or should have known about the alleged act of negligence) but also within seven years of the alleged act or omission (except in cases involving foreign objects left inside the patient’s body).
Unless both of these time limits are met, the plaintiff cannot prevail.