Florida Statute of Limitations for minors § 95.11 states: 4-year period shall not bar an action brought on behalf of a minor on or before the child’s eighth birthday.
In layman’s terms, this means that a parent or guardian can potentially have up until their child is 8 years old to seek legal action against a medical provider in a medical malpractice suit, and is not limited by the two to four year statute that binds other cases.
Until 2018 cases of minors fell under the same statutes of limitations as adults even though many injuries can go undetected until a child is more developed. “Tony’s Law” changed the statute of limitations so that it now accounts for a victim’s cognitive and physical development over the course of their childhood and provides time for a parent to act.
The law is named for Dritone “Tony” Valdes, who at the age of 4 months was misdiagnosed as a hermaphrodite during hernia surgery, had his testicles – misidentified as ovaries – sewn into his abdomen, and was then recommended to have his penis amputated, all by the same doctor in West Palm Beach, Fl.
Cases of pediatric medical negligence and malpractice are not uncommon, however, few parents had the ability to follow through with legal action due to the timeline of the original statute. In this case, Tony’s mother was not aware of the negligence until the statute had expired by just 14 days.
With the help and guidance of Ted Babbitt, Elaina Valdes successfully took on Florida’s medical and insurance lobbies and changed state malpractice laws as they applied to young children. After years of legal battle in Tallahassee, “Tony’s Law” was passed.
If you are in need of legal assistance regarding a medical negligence or malpractice case, contact Ted Babbitt, an experienced West Palm Beach, Florida personal injury attorney who can assist you in determining if your situation warrants legal action, and how to proceed. His team will give you an honest assessment of your case and explain your legal options. Fill out this online form or call today – (561) 375-2841.