The majority of people are under the impression that negligent medical care is uncommon. It may be difficult for victims of medical malpractice who are seeking compensation for their injuries to win a case at trial. Because of this, cases like these typically result in negotiated settlements instead of going to court. If you have legal representation on your side, the chances of a favorable outcome are significantly higher than if you do not.
An experienced attorney will have access to the resources necessary to conduct an appropriate investigation of the incident and will be able to assist you in gathering the evidence that is required to support a claim of medical malpractice.
Contact Pittsburgh medical malpractice lawyer Jason Matzus of Matzus Law, LLC if you would like more information on how to obtain just compensation for the losses you have sustained. Your first consultation with us is on us, and if we determine that your claim has merit, we will do everything in our power to protect your legal rights so that you can concentrate on getting better.
Establishing Liability and Proving Causation
Before a lawyer can assist you in calculating the value of your losses, there are two essential things that need to be proven.
- The physician or other medical professional acted in a negligent manner.
- Your injuries and losses are a direct result of the medical professional’s negligence, which caused them.
Despite the apparent simplicity of these prerequisites, meeting them requires a significant amount of effort. Even though you may know for a fact that something took place, it may be difficult to provide evidence of what took place.
To prove that a doctor or other medical professional was negligent, you need to collect evidence that demonstrates they did not act with the appropriate level of care. The level of care that was provided by him or her was not up to the standard that would have been expected from a reasonable physician with comparable levels of education, training, and experience.
You would need to provide evidence of the generally accepted medical practices that were prevalent in the area and during the time period in which you sustained an injury. For instance, a physician cannot be found negligent for performing a procedure that did not become a commonly used medical practice until after the date of your injury. This rule applies even if the procedure was performed before the injury occurred.
On the other hand, proving that one thing caused another is a very difficult task. For example, a patient may have a preexisting medical condition that was not the result of the doctor’s negligence. However, if the doctor’s actions cause the condition to worsen or persist for a longer period of time, the patient may be able to hold the doctor accountable for medical malpractice.
Another issue that might come up for a patient who has been the victim of medical malpractice is with the contributory factors. For example, a medical professional may have made an error in diagnosing a condition that required surgery, but they cannot be held liable if the patient experienced adverse effects as a result of the anesthesia that was administered to them. In order to have a valid claim, the injury that was sustained must be connected to the incorrect diagnosis.
Discussions Regarding the Settlement of a Medical Negligence Claim
Your ability to negotiate the value of your medical malpractice claim can begin once it has been established that a doctor or other medical professional is responsible for causing your injuries. This value may include compensation for all of the losses that you have incurred as a result of substandard medical care, such as the following examples:
- Extra mental and physical anguish on top of that which was already brought on by the initial condition
- Wage loss incurred as a result of being unable to work not because of the underlying condition, but rather due to the negligence of the treating physician
- A reduction in one’s potential for future earnings as a result of having sustained an injury that is permanent.
Acceptance From a Qualified Medical Practitioner
In most cases, claims for less serious incidents are resolved by the insurer representing the medical professional, regardless of whether or not the professional admits fault for the incident. In contrast to standard personal injury cases, however, cases involving medical malpractice typically involve medical professionals having the final say over whether or not a settlement should be accepted. In the event of a settlement, their professional liability insurance would be directly impacted. It may be challenging for a medical professional who is adamant in their conviction that they did not cause any harm to reach a settlement outside of the courtroom.
How Payments for Settled Claims Are Disbursed
You will be compensated for your losses once a settlement or verdict has been reached, which may take some time. A victim of medical malpractice has two options available to him or her in order to collect the settlement money:
- Structured payment – a type of payment that is frequently awarded in cases that involve minors or injuries that are related to birth. The court would establish a fund to make certain that the victim has access to financial resources necessary for ongoing medical care.
- Payment in one lump sum – These payments are less complicated, and the victim and his or her lawyer prefer them because it allows more options to set up funds to help cover past, future, and current medical expenses. In addition, these payments are preferred because they allow more money to be paid out to the victim.
Payments made as part of a settlement are typically made payable to the attorney representing the victim, who then places the funds in an escrow account. The victim is compensated for their losses once all outstanding balances, including attorney fees and costs, have been satisfied.
Today is the Day to Seek Out Legal Assistance
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of treatment that was provided in a negligent manner, it is in your best interest to seek the advice and representation of a qualified West Palm Beach medical malpractice attorney at our firm. We bring decades of experience to the table when negotiating settlements for claims of medical malpractice. Even if it is necessary for us to represent you in court, we are prepared to put in the effort necessary to defend your legal rights and assist you in obtaining the compensation you require.
Make an appointment for a no-cost consultation to get more information about the various legal options you have. You are under no obligation to hire us, and you will not be required to make any upfront payments for our services unless and until you are awarded reasonable compensation.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.