2019 Georgia Code
Title 9 - Civil Practice
Chapter 3 - Limitations of Actions
Article 4 - Limitations for Malpractice Actions
§ 9-3-73. Certain disabilities and exceptions applicable
(a) Except as provided in this Code section, the disabilities and exceptions prescribed in Article 5 of this chapter in limiting actions on contracts shall be allowed and held applicable to actions, whether in tort or contract, for medical malpractice.
(b) Notwithstanding Article 5 of this chapter, all persons who are legally incompetent because of intellectual disability or mental illness and all minors who have attained the age of five years shall be subject to the periods of limitation for actions for medical malpractice provided in this article. A minor who has not attained the age of five years shall have two years from the date of such minor's fifth birthday within which to bring a medical malpractice action if the cause of action arose before such minor attained the age of five years.
(c) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this Code section, in no event may an action for medical malpractice be brought by or on behalf of:
(1) A person who is legally incompetent because of intellectual disability or mental illness more than five years after the date on which the negligent or wrongful act or omission occurred; or
(2) A minor:
(A) After the tenth birthday of the minor if such minor was under the age of five years on the date on which the negligent or wrongful act or omission occurred; or
(B) After five years from the date on which the negligent or wrongful act or omission occurred if such minor was age five or older on the date of such act or omission.
(d) Subsection (b) of this Code section is intended to create a statute of limitations and subsection (c) of this Code section is intended to create a statute of repose.
(e) The limitations of subsections (b) and (c) of this Code section shall not apply where a foreign object has been left in a patient's body. Such cases shall be governed by Code Section 9-3-72.
(f) The findings of the General Assembly under this Code section include, without limitation, that a reasonable relationship exists between the provisions, goals, and classifications of this Code section and the rational, legitimate state objectives of providing quality health care, assuring the availability of physicians, preventing the curtailment of medical services, stabilizing insurance and medical costs, preventing stale medical malpractice claims, and providing for the public safety, health, and welfare as a whole.
(g) No action which, prior to July 1, 1987, has been barred by provisions relating to limitations of actions shall be revived by this article, as amended. No action which would be barred before July 1, 1987, by the provisions of this article, as amended, but which would not be so barred by the provisions of this article and Article 5 of this chapter in force immediately prior to July 1, 1987, shall be barred until July 1, 1989.
Code 1933, § 3-1104, enacted by Ga. L. 1976, p. 1363, § 1; Ga. L. 1987, p. 887, § 2; Ga. L. 2015, p. 385, § 4-15/HB 252.