Medical malpractice is the third leading cause of death in the United States alone. Many other countries around the world have similar statistics.
However, just because you fall sick because of any action taken by a medical professional, it does not mean you have a medical malpractice case. A medical malpractice case is a serious issue, and you should ensure you have a strong case before making a claim against a doctor, clinic, or hospital.
You should know that medical malpractice cases tend to end in favor of medical professionals and not plaintiffs. The fact is even a winnable medical malpractice case might involve too much work because of the pushback from the other side.
The following are some factors to help you decide if you should sue for medical malpractice or not:
Statute of Limitations
There is a time frame on how long since you discovered the activity has your injury persisted. If you are going to sue a doctor, clinic, or hospital for medical malpractice, you should ensure that it is still within the statute of limitations.
The statute of limitations on medical malpractice cases is two years since you discovered evidence of the malpractice. You have four years to file a claim from the occurrence of the incident or it was discovered after a health test.
If you sue for medical malpractice after the statute of limitations has passed, your case will be null and void.
The threshold for Medical Malpractice
Before you sue a doctor, clinic, or hospital for medical malpractice, you should first decide whether your case meets the legal threshold for malpractice. For your claim to meet the threshold, a medical professional or institution must have breached the standard of care.
The standard of care refers to treating a particular disease with a favorable or unfavorable outcome. If a doctor followed the set procedures but resulted in a negative effect, you do not have a medical malpractice case.
Moreover, doctors are only required to offer patients the bare minimum as it pertains to the standard of care. They do not have to provide the best care possible, and you cannot sue them if they meet the bare minimum.
If you want to start a medical malpractice settlement suit, you will have to prove that the medical malpractice did lead to your injuries or illness or mental health disorder without a shred of a doubt.
Therefore, even if your doctor made serious errors while treating you that led to the medical malpractice case, you need to prove that their actions directly violated the standard of care. There should be apparent negligence on their part.
You have to make the distinction between treatment being merely unsuccessful and medical practice. Poor results of treatment and even death don’t always constitute medical malpractice.
In addition, one must be able to know about legal principles when planning to begin a medical malpractice lawsuit. More importantly, consider the legal differences of breach of duty of care and causation in a medical negligence case. A breach of duty must first be proven in court to succeed in the case. Causation comes next–this will tell if the involved patient indeed suffered further pain, injury or death due to the said negligence.
The way to tell the difference is to consult a lawyer who has experience with medical malpractice. You should also visit other doctors to determine whether their treatment will work on you and determine if your previous treatment was faulty.
Receiving a Settlement for Medical Malpractice
To start a medical malpractice suit, you must obtain a written medical opinion from another medical professional doing the same treatments and having the same relevance. If they determine that there was wrongdoing in your treatment, you can begin to file a medical malpractice suit.
Therefore, you must obtain the entire medical records of the negatively affected person and have them reviewed by various medical experts. It will take money to do so and hence needs significant investment. It would be best if you could afford to be in contention for the settlement.
You will incur many expenses while trying to prove your case, and you should be able to pay for them. The average payout of $348,065 for a medical practice settlement should be enough to cater to your bills. Several high-profile payouts and many little ones, but only the larger ones, justify the expenditure for a medical malpractice suit.
In conclusion, if you think you have an excellent medical malpractice case, you should sue them and get a reasonable settlement. Ensure you consult a lawyer before that. Remember, medical malpractice makes your life an open book, and you should be open to the controversy that comes alongside it.
WRITTEN BYSerena K. Johnson