New York Medical Malpractice Laws

There is no limit on damages. The statute of limitations is two years and six months from the injury (for a foreign object, the action may be filed within one year of reasonable discovery). There is modified joint and several liability (joint and several liability for economic damages and several liability only for noneconomic damages if fault is 50% or less). Attorney fees are limited to 30% of the first $250,000, 25% of the next $250,000, 20% of the next $500,000, 15% of the next $250,000, and 10% for the amount over $1.25 million. For awards in excess of $500,000 for future pain and suffering, the court determines the greater of 35% of such damages or $500,000 and awards that amount in lump sum, with the balance being paid in periodic payments over a period time determined by the court or for eight years, whichever is less. The New York State Medical Indemnity Fund provides funding for future health care costs associated with birth-related neurological injuries. Where a defendant concedes liability, the defendant may demand that the claimant elect whether to consent to arbitration of damages. A settlement conference is mandatory. At the time of filing a complaint in court, the claimant’s attorney is required to file a certificate stating that the attorney has consulted with at least one qualified expert and that the attorney concluded after review and consultation that there is a reasonable basis for filing the action.

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