Do I Have A Medical Malpractice-Wrongful Death Case?

The scope of the medical malpractice problem.

slip and fall settlement calculator differ drastically on the number of medical errors that occur in the United States. Some studies put the variety of medical errors in excess of one million each year while other research studies put the number as low as a few hundred thousand. It is commonly accepted however that iatrogenic disease (disease or injury brought on by a medical mistake or medical treatment) is the third 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 a lawyer who has actually restricted his practice to representation of victims injured by someone else's carelessness, medical or otherwise, I have gotten thousands of calls from prospective customers over the last Twenty Years asking me if they have a medical malpractice case. Because medical malpractice litigation is really costly and really lengthy the lawyers in our firm are extremely cautious exactly what medical malpractice cases where we choose to get involved. It is not at all uncommon for an attorney, or law practice to advance lawsuits costs in excess of $100,000.00 simply to obtain a case to trial. These expenditures are the expenses associated with pursuing the litigation that include expert witness charges, deposition costs, show preparation and court expenses. What follows is an overview of the concerns, concerns and considerations that the attorneys in our company consider when discussing with a client a potential medical malpractice case.

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical Malpractice is medical treatment that breaches of the "Requirement of Care" for medical doctors (or nurses, chiropractic physicians, dental professionals, podiatrists etc.) which leads to an injury or death. "Requirement of Care" indicates medical treatment that a sensible, sensible medical supplier in the very same neighborhood ought to provide. Most cases involve a dispute over exactly what the applicable standard of care is. The standard of care is typically offered through making use of expert statement from speaking with medical professionals that practice or teach medication in the exact same specialty as the offender( s).

When did the malpractice happen (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 defendant treated the plaintiff (victim) or the date the complainant discovered or fairly should have discovered the malpractice. Some states have a 2 year statute of restrictions. In Ohio if the victim is a small the statute of limitations will not even start to run until the minor ends up being 18 years old. Be advised nevertheless derivative claims for moms and dads might run many years earlier. If you think you might have a case it is important you call a lawyer quickly. Regardless of of constraints, physicians transfer, witnesses vanish and memories fade. The faster counsel is engaged the quicker important evidence can be protected and the better your opportunities are of prevailing.

What did the medical professional do or fail to do?

Just due to the fact that a patient does not have an effective result from a surgery, medical procedure or medical treatment does not in and of itself imply the medical professional made a mistake. Medical practice is by no suggests an assurance of health or a complete recovery. Most of the time when a client experiences a not successful arise from medical treatment it is not because the medical provider slipped up. Most of the time when there is a bad medical result it is in spite of excellent, quality healthcare not because of sub-standard healthcare. blockquote class="curated_content">

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When going over a potential case with a customer it is important that the client be able to inform us why they believe there was medical neglect. As all of us understand people often pass away from cancer, heart disease or organ failure even with excellent healthcare. However, we also know that people typically should not die from knee surgery, appendix removal, hernia repair work or some other "small" surgical treatment. When something extremely unforeseen like that happens it definitely is worth exploring whether there was a medical mistake. If in doubt most medical malpractice lawyers will discuss your case with you informally on the telephone. A lot of legal representatives do not charge for an initial consultation in carelessness cases.

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

In any negligence case not just is the burden of proof on the plaintiff to show the medical malpractice the plaintiff need to also prove that as a direct outcome of the medical neglect some injury or death resulted (damages). This is called "proximate cause." Given that medical malpractice litigation is so expensive to pursue the injuries should be considerable to necessitate moving on with the case. All medical mistakes are "malpractice" nevertheless just a small percentage of errors trigger medical malpractice cases.

By way of example, if a moms and dad takes his child to the emergency room after a skateboard accident and the ER doctor doesn't do x-rays despite an apparent bend in the kid's lower arm and tells the daddy his boy has "simply a sprain" this likely is medical malpractice. However, if the kid is correctly detected within a couple of days and makes a total healing it is not likely the "damages" are severe enough to carry out a suit that likely would cost in excess of $50,000.00. Nevertheless, if because of the delay in being correctly diagnosed, the boy needs to have his arm re-broken and the growth plate is irreparably damaged due to the hold-up then the damages likely would warrant further examination and a possible suit.

Other important considerations.

Other issues that are necessary when identifying whether a customer has a malpractice case include the victim's habits and medical history. Did the victim do anything to cause or contribute to the bad medical outcome? of medical malpractice defense lawyer is to blame the client. If it is a birth injury case, did the mommy have proper prenatal care, did she smoke or use drugs throughout her pregnancy? In other cases, did the client follow the medical professional's orders, keep his consultations, take his medication as advised and tell the doctor the fact? These are facts that we need to know in order to determine whether the medical professional will have a legitimate defense to the malpractice lawsuit?

What occurs if it appears like there is a case?

If it appears that the client might have been a victim of a medical mistake, the medical error triggered a significant injury or death and the patient was compliant with his physician's orders, then we need to get the client's medical records. In many cases, acquiring the medical records includes nothing more mailing a release signed by the client to the physician and/or healthcare facility along with a letter requesting the records. When it comes to wrongful death, an administrator of the victims estate has to be appointed in the local county probate court and after that the executor can sign the release requesting the records.

Once the records are received we examine them to make sure they are complete. It is not uncommon in medical negligence cases to get incomplete medical charts. Once all the appropriate records are acquired they are provided to a certified medical expert for review and viewpoint. If the case is against an emergency room physician we have an emergency clinic physician review the case, if it protests a cardiologist we need to get an opinion from a cardiologist, and so on

. Primarily, exactly what we would like to know form the expert is 1) was the medical care supplied below the requirement of care, 2) did the violation of the requirement of care result in the patients injury or death? If the medical professionals viewpoint is favorable on both counts a suit will be prepared on the customer's behalf and usually submitted in the court of typical pleas in the county where the malpractice was devoted or in the county where the offender lives. In some restricted scenarios jurisdiction for the malpractice suit could be federal court or some other court.


In sum, a great malpractice attorney will carefully and completely evaluate any prospective malpractice case before filing a claim. It's unfair to the victim or the physicians to file a suit unless the expert informs us that he thinks there is a strong basis to bring the suit. Due to the expenditure of pursuing a medical carelessness action no good legal representative has the time or resources to waste on a "unimportant suit."

When speaking with a malpractice legal representative it is very important to accurately provide the legal representative as much information as possible and answer the legal representative's concerns as completely as possible. Prior to speaking to an attorney think about making some notes so you always remember some essential fact or situation the legal representative might need.

Finally, if you believe you might have a malpractice case get in touch with a good malpractice attorney as soon as possible so there are no statute of limitations problems in your case.

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