Getting Started With A Medical Malpractice Lawsuit
If you feel that your negligent treatment by a healthcare provider resulted in harm to your person, then you might have a shot at successfully filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. However, these tend to be legal minefields, since there are so many different and unique laws that you need to deal with on your road to compensation. Here are some general ideas that you should keep in mind when thinking about filing:
What are the criteria of a successful medical malpractice lawsuit?
There are basically two things that you will need to prove: negligence on the part of the provider and the presence of damage that resulted from that negligence.
Standard of Care - The first is simple in theory, but a lot harder to apply to the real world. The basic underlying principle is that your lawyer (or you) will need to find evidence that the healthcare provider in question did not work in accordance with the standard of care. The standard of care is essentially how a similar healthcare professional would treat a similar patient. In other words, if a doctor in California made an incorrect diagnosis that caused you a lot of pain, then you will need to prove that their actions were different than what the average California doctor would do when handling a patient with your symptoms, age, and medical history.
Proof of Injury - Once you have proved that the standard of care was violated, you still need to prove that your injury can be directly attributed to that malpractice. This is extremely simple in cases where the incorrect limb was amputated, but other cases can be a bit more tricky. Regardless, you will need to find proof that your injury can be directly linked to the malpractice. If the lawyers on the other side can argue that your injury could have come from another source, then you will need to be ready to argue against that as well.
How much money can you win?
One of the biggest questions is how much money you stand to win from a favorable verdict. This is highly dependent upon the state that you are in, so you will need to consult your state's laws to determine the maximum amount of money that you are entitled to.
However, these caps only apply to non-economic damages, which means that your economic damages are unlimited. In other words, your medical bills and lost wages may be pursued without limit, but you might find yourself limited when it comes to asking for compensation for pain and suffering. Contact a lawyer like one from R.J. Marzella & Associates, P.C. for more information.