Guide On How to Sue for Medical Negligence in Nigeria

Sadly, many people have lost their lives as a result of medical negligence of health practitioners because of several reasons ranging from misdiagnosing of patients, or rightly diagnosed but administered wrong medication.

In our last blog post, we discussed what constituted medical negligence, in this post, we will be demystifying how you can use a health practitioner and claim your damages where it has been successfully established that the medical practitioner was negligent in conducting his or her duties.

When you Can Sue

Health practitioners owe you as their patient a duty of care and as such where they breach this duty and it results in you the patient suffering any form of damage, then it is safe to say that you have the right to claim for damages.

It is important to reiterate that medical professionals are not expected to be completely perfect in dealing with patients, but rather the Law expects them to uphold a reasonable standard of care on them and not be negligent in their dealings. See our previous post to understand what constitutes medical negligence in Nigeria.

When you Can Sue for Compensation

For you to be able to sue for compensation, you must have suffered some form of harm on the account of the act being complained about.

Time Limit to Claim and Amount of Compensation You Can Receive

Generally, the time limit to make a claim for compensation is three years and this period runs from the date when the patient first received the negligent treatment complained of or the date on which it is discovered that a negligent act occurred.

Claims or compensation varies upon different cases which will determine the amount the patient will be compensated with.

Considerations for Compensation

The court before deciding on the amount of compensation to award to you will put into consideration some factors which are;

  • The severity of the harm caused
  • Your age
  • Employment status
  • Linked losses that happened as a result of the negligent act


There are so many factors that constitute negligence as well as various claims that are available to you as a patient who suffered any harm as a result of medical negligence. If you feel you are a victim of medical negligence in Nigeria, it is best you engage the service of a Lawyer to analyse your case and determine if you have a tangible case to sue for so as to not sue in futility.

You can contact us for a free consultation in order to provide you with more information on medical negligence in Nigeria and whether you have a claim to make in a competent court.

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