Do I Have A Medical Malpractice-Wrongful Death Case?

The scope of the medical malpractice issue.

Data differ dramatically on the variety of medical errors that occur in the United States. Some research studies put the number of medical mistakes in excess of one million annually while other studies put the number as low as a couple of hundred thousand. It is extensively accepted however that iatrogenic illness (illness or injury caused by a medical mistake or medical treatment) is the third leading cause of death in the United States after heart disease 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 gotten countless calls from prospective customers over the last 20 years asking me if they have a medical malpractice case. Since medical malpractice lawsuits is extremely costly and very protracted the attorneys in our company are really careful what medical malpractice cases in which we decide to get involved. It is not at all unusual for an attorney, or law office to advance lawsuits expenses in excess of $100,000.00 just to obtain a case to trial. These expenses are the expenses associated with pursuing the lawsuits which include expert witness costs, deposition expenses, show preparation and court costs. What follows is Related Web Page of the concerns, questions and considerations that the lawyers in our firm consider when going over with a customer a prospective medical malpractice case.

Exactly What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical Malpractice is medical treatment that breaches of the "Standard of Care" for medical doctors (or nurses, chiropractors, dentists, podiatric doctors and so on.) which leads to an injury or death. "Requirement of Care" indicates medical treatment that an affordable, prudent medical company in the exact same neighborhood ought to provide. The majority of cases involve a conflict over exactly what the relevant standard of care is. The standard of care is generally offered through making use of expert testimony from seeking advice from medical professionals that practice or teach medication in the exact same specialized 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 treated the complainant (victim) or the date the complainant discovered or fairly should have found the malpractice. Some states have a two year statute of limitations. In Ohio if the victim is a small the statute of limitations will not even begin to run up until the small becomes 18 years old. Be recommended nevertheless acquired claims for parents may run several years earlier. If you believe you might have a case it is important you call a lawyer quickly. Irrespective of the statute of limitations, physicians relocate, witnesses vanish and memories fade. The faster counsel is engaged the sooner essential proof can be preserved and the much better your opportunities are of prevailing.

Exactly what did the doctor do or cannot do?

Simply since a client does not have an effective arise from a surgical treatment, medical procedure or medical treatment does not in and of itself mean the medical professional made a mistake. Medical practice is by no indicates a guarantee of health or a complete healing. The majority of the time when a patient experiences a not successful result from medical treatment it is not due to the fact that the medical provider made a mistake. The majority of the time when there is a bad medical result it is regardless of good, quality treatment not because of sub-standard healthcare.

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When discussing a potential case with a customer it is necessary that the client be able to tell us why they believe there was medical negligence. As we all understand people often die from cancer, cardiovascular disease or organ failure even with excellent medical care. However, we also understand that individuals typically need to not pass away from knee surgical treatment, appendix removal, hernia repair or some other "minor" surgery. When unanticipated like that occurs it certainly deserves exploring whether there was a medical mistake. If in doubt most medical malpractice lawyers will discuss your case with you informally on the telephone. Most legal representatives do not charge for a preliminary assessment in negligence cases.

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

In any neglect case not only is the burden of proof on the plaintiff to show the medical malpractice the plaintiff must also prove that as a direct result of the medical carelessness some injury or death resulted (damages). is called "near cause." Because medical malpractice litigation is so expensive to pursue the injuries must be substantial to call for progressing with the case. All medical errors are "malpractice" nevertheless just a small percentage of mistakes trigger medical malpractice cases.

By way of example, if a parent takes his kid to the emergency room after a skateboard accident and the ER doctor doesn't do x-rays regardless of an apparent bend in the child's forearm and informs the daddy his kid has "just a sprain" this likely is medical malpractice. But, if the child is properly diagnosed within a couple of days and makes a complete recovery it is unlikely the "damages" are severe adequate to carry out a claim that likely would cost in excess of $50,000.00. Nevertheless, if because of the delay in being properly identified, the kid needs to have his arm re-broken and the development plate is irreparably damaged due to the hold-up then the damages likely would call for more examination and a possible lawsuit.

Other important considerations.

Other issues that are essential when identifying whether a customer has a malpractice case consist of the victim's habits and case history. Did the victim do anything to trigger or contribute to the bad medical outcome? A common technique of medical malpractice defense lawyer is to blame the patient. If it is a birth injury case, did the mommy have appropriate prenatal care, did she smoke or utilize drugs throughout her pregnancy? In other cases, did the client follow the doctor's orders, keep his appointments, take his medication as advised and inform the physician the truth? These are truths that we need to understand in order to figure out whether the medical professional will have a legitimate defense to the malpractice claim?

What takes place if it looks like there is a case?

If it appears that the patient may have been a victim of a medical error, the medical mistake triggered a considerable injury or death and the patient was certified with his medical professional's orders, then we have to get the client's medical records. For the most parts, acquiring the medical records involves absolutely nothing more mailing a release signed by the client to the doctor and/or medical facility along with a letter requesting the records. In the case of wrongful death, an administrator of the victims estate has to be selected in the regional county probate court and after that the administrator can sign the release asking for the records.

Once the records are gotten we evaluate them to make sure they are complete. It is not uncommon in medical neglect cases to get incomplete medical charts. When all the appropriate records are gotten they are supplied to a qualified medical specialist for evaluation and viewpoint. If the case is against an emergency room doctor we have an emergency clinic medical professional examine the case, if it's against a cardiologist we have to acquire a viewpoint from a cardiologist, and so on

. Primarily, exactly what we need to know form the professional is 1) was the healthcare offered listed below the standard of care, 2) did the violation of the standard of care result in the patients injury or death? If agrees with on both counts a suit will be prepared on the client's behalf and typically submitted in the court of common pleas in the county where the malpractice was committed or in the county where the offender lives. In some minimal situations jurisdiction for the malpractice suit could be federal court or some other court.


In sum, a good malpractice attorney will carefully and completely evaluate any potential malpractice case before filing a suit. It's unfair to the victim or the doctors to submit a claim unless the professional tells us that he thinks there is a strong basis to bring the suit. Due to the cost of pursuing a medical neglect action no good legal representative has the time or resources to squander on a "frivolous suit."

When seeking advice from a malpractice legal representative it is essential to precisely give the legal representative as much information as possible and address the attorney's questions as totally as possible. Prior to speaking with a lawyer think about making some notes so you do not forget some crucial reality or situation the lawyer may need.

Last but not least, if you think you might have a malpractice case contact a good malpractice legal representative as soon as possible so there are no statute of restrictions problems in your case.

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