A federal court affirmed a summary judgment in favor of a federally-run nursing home that was accused of negligence in the wrongful death of an elderly resident who fell while unsupervised. The reason plaintiff could not prevail, despite filing the case within the applicable state statute of limitations for wrongful death actions, was that it was the federal statute of limitations that actually applied.
As justices for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit wrote: “To be sure, it is unfortunate when a potentially important claim is lost because a deadline is missed.” Nonetheless, the court wrote, it’s the necessary result when a claimant fails to properly assert the claim within the designated statute of limitations, without which claims would be filed long after the ability to recreate what happened would be feasible.
Although this is understandable, it is a nonetheless disappointing outcome, and one that underscores the importance of immediately seeking a consultation with an experienced nursing home injury lawyer at the first suspicion that negligence may have been the cause of a a nursing home injury or death. Continue reading →