Why Do Medical Malpractice Cases Take So Long?

February 14, 2023 Insights

holding hands

If a doctor or other medical professional has harmed you, you may have a case for medical malpractice. This is a complex area of law, so it’s important to have an experienced attorney. Your attorney can help you navigate the process and build a strong case.

Medical malpractice cases are time-sensitive and require experienced legal counsel to navigate. Each state has its own laws and deadlines for filing medical malpractice cases, so it’s important to seek legal help as soon as possible to avoid any mistakes that could cause delays.

Average Length of a Medical Malpractice Case

The amount of time it takes to resolve a medical malpractice case depends on several factors, including the severity of the injury, the number of damages at stake, the complexity of the legal issues involved, and the availability of witnesses and evidence. In some cases, a settlement can be reached relatively quickly, while it may take months or even years to reach a resolution in others.

The average medical malpractice claim takes two to three years to resolve. Depending on the case’s complexity, claims can take a few months to a few years to resolve.

If both parties can come to an agreement, the lawsuit will fall on a shorter timeline. If they cannot agree, the case will go to trial, which will take longer.

Factors That Make a Medical Malpractice Case Longer

Here are four common factors that determine the length of a medical malpractice case:

  • Complex Medical and Legal Issues

It can be tricky to figure out which doctor or healthcare provider is responsible for medical negligence. And it might take some time to discover if there is more than one person at fault. Also, it can take a lot of work to know how long the legal process will take. For example, you might need a medical review panel to examine the evidence and make a decision.

Another thing to think about is the statute of limitations. This is the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit. All of these different factors can make medical malpractice cases more complicated.

  • Multiple Liable Parties

Medical malpractice lawsuits are usually complex, involving multiple parties who may be held liable for the injury. These parties can include doctors, nurses, hospitals, or pharmaceutical companies. It can take some time to determine which party or parties acted negligently and contributed to the injury.

  • A Long List of Witnesses

A medical malpractice case can involve many witnesses, including medical experts. Both sides bring a team of expert witnesses in a battle of experts, all deposed. Many medical expert witnesses are busy doctors or healthcare professionals, and some might be out of state. Scheduling depositions can be challenging, especially if they are canceled and rescheduled. It can take several months to interview everyone.

  • Strategic Delays

Litigation fatigue is when someone is so exhausted from the legal process that they are tempted to take a lower settlement offer to end it. This is a real concern because the process can be very time-consuming and overwhelming. Defense lawyers and insurance companies know this and sometimes wait for the person to get tired before offering a settlement.


Long medical malpractice cases can be very complex and difficult to navigate without the help of a lawyer. There are many different aspects to consider, such as the Statute of Limitations, and it can take time to know where to start. A lawyer can help you understand the law and guide you through the process, ensuring you have the best chance of success.

At Circeo Law Firm, our award-winning Kentucky injury attorneys will aggressively advocate for justice if you or a loved one were injured due to someone else’s negligence. Through the passion, tenacity, and talent of our legal team, we have helped obtain hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients through verdicts and settlements. If you need medical malpractice lawyers in Lexington, KY, we’ve got you covered! Get in touch with us and let us know how we can help!