Do I Have A Medical Malpractice-Wrongful Death Case?

The scope of the medical malpractice problem.

Stats differ considerably on the variety of medical errors that happen in the United States. Some research studies position the number of medical errors in excess of one million every year while other research studies put the number as low as a couple of hundred thousand. It is widely accepted however that iatrogenic illness (disease or injury triggered by a medical error or medical treatment) is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States after heart problem and cancer. See, The JOURNAL of the AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (JAMA) Vol 284, No 4, July 26th 2000.

As an attorney who has limited his practice to representation of victims hurt by another person's neglect, medical or otherwise, I have actually received countless calls from potential customers over the last Twenty Years asking me if they have a medical malpractice case. Considering that medical malpractice lawsuits is very costly and extremely drawn-out the legal representatives in our company are very careful exactly what medical malpractice cases in which we choose to get involved. It is not uncommon for a lawyer, or law practice to advance litigation expenses in excess of $100,000.00 just to get a case to trial. These expenditures are the expenses associated with pursuing the litigation which include professional witness costs, deposition costs, exhibit preparation and court costs. What follows is an overview of the problems, concerns and factors to consider that the attorneys in our company consider when going over with a customer a potential medical malpractice case.

Exactly What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical Malpractice is medical treatment that breaches of the "Requirement of Care" for medical physicians (or nurses, chiropractic doctors, dental practitioners, podiatrists etc.) which results in an injury or death. "Requirement of Care" implies medical treatment that a sensible, prudent medical provider in the very same community must offer. Many cases include a disagreement over what the appropriate requirement of care is. The standard of care is usually supplied through making use of expert testament from speaking with physicians that practice or teach medication in the same specialty as the defendant( s).

When did the malpractice take place (Statute of Limitations)?

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In Ohio the medical malpractice statute of limitations is one year from the date of the malpractice, or the last date the offender dealt with the complainant (victim) or the date the plaintiff found or reasonably should have found the malpractice. Some states have a 2 year statute of limitations. In Ohio if the victim is a minor the statute of limitations will not even begin to run up until the minor becomes 18 years old. Be encouraged nevertheless acquired claims for moms and dads may run several years previously. If you believe you may have a case it is very important you call a lawyer quickly. Irrespective of the statute of limitations, physicians move, witnesses disappear and memories fade. The quicker counsel is engaged the earlier important evidence can be protected and the better your chances are of dominating.

Exactly what did the medical professional do or cannot do?

Just since a patient does not have an effective result from a surgery, medical treatment or medical treatment does not in and of itself mean the physician slipped up. Medical practice is by no means a warranty of health or a total healing. Most of the time when a client experiences a not successful arise from medical treatment it is not due to the fact that the medical provider made a mistake. Most of the time when there is a bad medical result it is despite good, quality healthcare not because of sub-standard healthcare.

Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer

We often see ads for personal injury lawyers that say injured people can be compensated. philadelphia traffic court attorney listings might make you ask: when should you actually turn to a personal injury lawyer? After all, it’s not like every single injured person in the world has been awarded a bunch of money. So, what makes a good personal injury case? When should an injured person turn to an attorney? Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer

When talking about a possible case with a customer it is very important that the client have the ability to inform us why they believe there was medical negligence. As all of us know people frequently die from cancer, heart disease or organ failure even with good healthcare. Nevertheless, we also know that people normally should not die from knee surgical treatment, appendix removal, hernia repair work or some other "small" surgery. When something really unexpected like that happens it definitely deserves exploring whether there was a medical error. If in doubt most medical malpractice legal representatives will discuss your case with you informally on the telephone. Many legal representatives do not charge for an initial consultation in carelessness cases.

So what if there was a medical error (proximate cause)?

In any negligence case not just is the burden of proof on the complainant to prove the medical malpractice the complainant need to likewise prove that as a direct outcome of the medical neglect some injury or death resulted (damages). This is called "near cause." Given that medical malpractice litigation is so expensive to pursue the injuries should be significant to require progressing with the case. All medical mistakes are "malpractice" nevertheless just a small portion of errors trigger medical malpractice cases.

By way of example, if a parent takes his son to the emergency room after a skateboard mishap and the ER medical professional does not do x-rays despite an obvious bend in the child's forearm and tells the dad his son has "simply a sprain" this likely is medical malpractice. However, if the child is correctly diagnosed within a couple of days and makes a complete healing it is not likely the "damages" are severe adequate to undertake a lawsuit that likely would cost in excess of $50,000.00. However, if because of the delay in being properly identified, the kid needs to have his arm re-broken and the development plate is irreparably harmed due to the hold-up then the damages likely would call for additional examination and a possible lawsuit.

Other crucial considerations.

Other issues that are important when identifying whether a client has a malpractice case include the victim's behavior and medical history. Did the victim do anything to trigger or contribute to the bad medical result? A typical tactic of medical malpractice defense lawyer is to blame the patient. If it is a birth trauma case, did the mama have appropriate prenatal care, did she smoke or use drugs during her pregnancy? In other cases, did the patient follow the doctor's orders, keep his appointments, take his medication as advised and inform the physician the truth? These are facts that we have to know in order to figure out whether the physician will have a legitimate defense to the malpractice lawsuit?

What happens if it appears like there is a case?

If it appears that the client might have been a victim of a medical error, the medical error caused a significant injury or death and the client was compliant with his physician's orders, then we have to get the patient's medical records. In most cases, getting the medical records involves absolutely nothing more mailing a release signed by the customer to the doctor and/or medical facility along with a letter asking for the records. In the case of wrongful death, an executor of the victims estate has to be designated in the local county court of probate and then the executor can sign the release requesting the records.

When the records are received we review them to make sure they are total. It is not unusual in medical negligence cases to get incomplete medical charts. As soon as all the appropriate records are gotten they are supplied to a competent medical specialist for review and opinion. If the case protests an emergency clinic doctor we have an emergency room medical professional examine the case, if it's against a cardiologist we have to obtain an opinion from a cardiologist, and so on

. Mainly, what we want to know form the expert is 1) was the treatment supplied listed below the standard of care, 2) did the infraction of the standard of care result in the clients injury or death? If the medical professionals viewpoint is favorable on both counts a suit will be prepared on the customer's behalf and normally filed in the court of common pleas in the county where the malpractice was dedicated or in the county where the offender lives. In some minimal situations jurisdiction for the malpractice claim could be federal court or some other court.


In sum, a great malpractice lawyer will carefully and thoroughly review any possible malpractice case prior to submitting a suit. It's unfair to the victim or the physicians to submit a lawsuit unless the expert informs us that he thinks there is a strong basis to bring the suit. Due to the expense of pursuing a medical neglect action no good legal representative has the time or resources to lose on a "pointless suit."

When seeking from a malpractice lawyer it is very important to accurately offer the legal representative as much detail as possible and respond to the attorney's concerns as completely as possible. Prior to speaking with a legal representative think about making some notes so you don't forget some crucial truth or situation the legal representative might need.

Lastly, if you believe you might have a malpractice case contact a good malpractice attorney as soon as possible so there are no statute of limitations issues in your case.

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