What is the New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act and What Does it Mean for Victims?
Contrary to popular belief, you are not always safe in the hands of doctors. A recent study released by John Hopkins estimates that 250,000 deaths occur annually due to medical malpractice, making it the third leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer. Members of the medical profession should be held responsible for their negligent actions. Sadly, if you are a victim of New Mexico medical malpractice, you may not get all that you deserve. The New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act sets limitations of liability for physicians and also sets a cap on certain damages you could be awarded in court.
If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, you need a medical malpractice attorney in New Mexico on your side. At Carabin Shaw, we believe in justice for victims, so we’re here to listen to your case and to determine the best way to get you proper compensation. We believe the first step is knowing what you’re up against. So: what is the New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act and what does it mean for victims? Below are some key points about this act that governs medical malpractice claims in New Mexico.The New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act
Malpractice cases in New Mexico fall under the New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act, found in Article 5 of the New Mexico Statutes, Section 41-5-1 through 41-5-29. Within these sections, the Act lays out specific requirements for New Mexico medical malpractice cases.
- Statute of Limitations - The New Mexico medical malpractice statute of limitations is three years from the alleged date of the incident. This means that a victim must file a lawsuit within three years from the date of malpractice to be within the legal window of time. An attorney can walk you through how to file a claim.
- New Mexico Medical Review Commission - Prior to filing a claim, a patient who believes they are the victim of malpractice must submit a written application that includes pertinent information about the patient’s care as well as permission for the New Mexico Medical Malpractice Review Board to obtain and review the patient’s medical records.
- Qualified Healthcare Providers - Certain healthcare providers in New Mexico can become “qualified healthcare providers” by purchasing malpractice liability insurance provided by the Act. It is important to note that if a healthcare provider does not have this insurance, they are not protected under the Act. If you have any questions, an experienced lawyer can answer them.
- Caps on Damages - The Medical Malpractice Act places a cap on most damages at $600,000. This means a victim of medical malpractice can’t receive compensation for more than $600,000 excluding the costs of both ongoing rehabilitative and medical care due to the injury. Unlike most of the U.S. though, the New Mexico law states this compensation will be given “as expenses are incurred,” meaning you can’t receive all your awarded money up front. New Mexico hospital negligence attorneys can provide you with more details on how this works.
- The Patient Compensation Fund - The Act limits the amount a defendant physician must pay to $200,000. Any further compensation for a plaintiff is given by the Patient Compensation Fund, a fund at the state-level which every qualified healthcare provider annually pays into via a surcharge required to be considered a qualified healthcare provider.
Medical malpractice laws are particularly complicated, especially in New Mexico. The best way to win is not alone, it’s with the help of an experienced lawyer. If you or a loved one is a victim of medical malpractice, you need New Mexico medical malpractice lawyers on your side. Our team at Carabin Shaw has worked countless malpractice cases, and we know how to maximize your compensation for your losses. Our attorneys are the best in the business. Find out why. Call us at: 915-779-2301