A Guide to Pursuing Medical Malpractice Claims
Medical malpractice cases are usually the result of an unfortunate tragedy. These tragedies occur in situations involving negligent acts on behalf of healthcare professionals, hospital staff, etc. Often these scenarios are accidental, but that doesn’t excuse the necessity of holding the responsible party accountable, whether their actions were intentional or not.
Healthcare professionals are held to a certain standard of care when treating their patients, and we all hope for the best medical treatment for our loved ones and ourselves. To better understand medical malpractice lawsuits, check out this article on seeking wrongful death settlements.
If you or your loved ones have experienced what you believe to be medical malpractice, it is crucial to understand what this type of case involves and what to expect from the journey ahead of you. Take a look at the following steps involved in a medical malpractice claim.
Verify the Circumstances Surrounding Your Case
Part of the initial process of pursuing a medical malpractice case is determining the circumstances surrounding the incident. You must be able to prove that a doctor-patient relationship existed and prove negligence on their/another medical professional’s part. To sue for malpractice, you must also show that their failure to provide appropriate care resulted in harm. This can include physical/mental pain and financial struggles, such as increased medical bills and the lack of ability to earn a living.
Speaking with your doctor or other healthcare professionals can help you clarify the situation and whether pursuing a claim is the best course of action. There may be a solution that your medical provider can offer to help remedy the problem.
In the case of death, clarifying the facts surrounding your medical malpractice claim is still essential. If you experience resistance when attempting to communicate with the healthcare professional, getting in touch with the licensing board may become necessary. They are responsible for overseeing the medical licenses that professionals carry. Their involvement can include helpful advice for you and potential discipline for the licensed professional.
File Your Claim Within the Required Time Frame
While dealing with a medical malpractice case can take its toll, it is vital to be aware of the time restraints involved with filing this type of claim. The start date begins when the injury or death occurs. The statute of limitations laws may vary from state to state. This makes it essential to work with an expert attorney who can advise and assist you with filing your claim in a timely manner.
Suppose you neglect to file by the required deadline. In that case, you or your loved one may lose the opportunity to hold the medical professional responsible accountable and have to waive your rights to any pain and suffering owed.
You May Need to File a Certificate of Merit
Some state legislatures now require that patients who are pursuing a medical malpractice claim file a certificate of merit. This certificate is what links your medical provider’s negligence to your injuries.
An “expert witness” (often a physician who is not associated with your case) is required to perform a review of all of your medical records. Utilizing this information, they must be able to verify that the health care professional failed to provide the standard of care required and that this negligence caused the injuries/death in question. Your attorney will file the certificate of merit on your behalf.
*Note: Some accepted medical malpractice cases do not currently require certificates of merit. It is essential to consult your attorney to ensure you follow the appropriate steps in pursuing your claim.
We Are Here to Help with Your Medical Malpractice Case
Medical malpractice cases can take a lot of time and financial resources before the courts reach a verdict, and many insurance companies reject medical malpractice claims. It is best to work with an expert attorney to ensure you receive the largest settlement for your pain and suffering.
Our team of experienced medical malpractice attorneys are ready to help you avoid missed deadlines, difficult insurance companies, and a lack of appropriate financial compensation. Contact us today to schedule your consultation and get started with your claim.