If you’ve been injured due to a doctor or medical professional’s negligence, the consequences can be devastating. Besides the physical pain, financial stress, and lost productivity that you are already experiencing, you could end up needing long-term medical treatment, rehabilitation or even permanent nursing care. Depending on the nature of your injury, you may also be unable to return to work. All of these costs can add up quickly and become overwhelming. That’s why you need to find a competent Medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.
To prove a medical malpractice case, you need to show that there was a breach of duty by a healthcare provider and that this breach directly led to your injury. The burden of proof for this is a lower standard than the “beyond reasonable doubt” standard that applies to criminal cases. A competent attorney will be able to gather the evidence needed to prove malpractice occurred and that it was the direct cause of your injury.
The first element of a medical malpractice claim is that you had a patient-provider relationship with the healthcare worker. This means that the doctor had a contractual agreement with you to provide you with healthcare and treatment in exchange for you seeking their help. You must have also placed trust in the doctor to follow the accepted standards of care for their profession when treating you.
In most states, this is established by showing that you had an initial consultation with the healthcare provider and that you agreed to their plan for treatment. Next, you must show that the healthcare worker breached their duty by not following this accepted standard of care for their profession. This can include not following their medical training, failing to properly interpret test results or following up on abnormal findings. It can also include not discussing all of your options for treatment with you or failing to disclose risks associated with a procedure.
A third element of a medical malpractice claim is that the breach of duty directly led to your injury. This is often difficult to prove. It requires establishing a direct link between the breach of duty and the resulting injury. This concept is known as proximate causation. The competent medical malpractice attorney will know how to establish this connection with the evidence gathered during the discovery process.
Finally, you must show that the injury caused by the healthcare provider’s negligence is significant enough to warrant monetary compensation. This can include recouping the cost of all medical expenses, lost earnings, future earnings potential and any other damages you have suffered. It can also include compensation for emotional distress, loss of companionship and disfigurement.
A good Medical malpractice lawyer will have a track record of success and the necessary skills to win your case. They will have a strong network of medical experts to support your claim and will understand how to gather and analyze the evidence that supports your case. They will also be well-versed in the legal complexities of filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, including understanding and dealing with the various types of insurance companies involved. They will also be able to determine when the statute of limitations expires on your claim, so you can act accordingly.