What is a Malpractice Law Firm?
A malpractice law firm is a legal entity comprised of lawyers who specialize in medical malpractice law. These individuals are well-versed in filing claims for their clients—individuals who were hurt or killed as a result of a doctor or medical institution’s negligence. Through a precise understanding of medical malpractice laws and quality of care laws, a medical malpractice law firm increases your odds of securing a settlement if you or a loved one has been injured or killed as a result of faulty care. The funds acquired form a medical malpractice suit are used to offset the costs associated with the faulty medical care, pain and suffering and lost wages.
Like many people, you may believe you have a substantial case if your doctor makes a mistake while treating. Problem is, laws surrounding medical malpractice are precise; the presence of malpractice requires a strict adherence to federal and local malpractice laws. There is a lot more to a medical malpractice case then simply getting hurt while receiving treatment. The factors to securing a claim involve proving the following:
• A medical professional made a mistake while treating your and you were harmed as a result of that mistake.
A medical malpractice case is often complex and lengthy, because proving the above is often arduous. This where a medical malpractice firm comes into play; without an exceptional understanding of malpractice laws and the essential ability to review medical history and treatment as it pertains to what is deemed standard you will not be able to file a successful medical malpractice suit.
Medical malpractice law firms are special legal entities responsible for processing medical malpractice claims and providing information to those individuals who are hurt by medical professionals. Medical malpractice, in the United States, occurs when a medical professional—like a doctor, technician or nurse—does something or doesn’t do something in the course of treatments that directly causes an injury or harm you. The medical professional’s actions—or lack thereof (referred to as an omission)—is referred to as medical negligence. As one can take from this definition, a claim for medical negligence involves an error or mistake made by a medical professional that harms you, the patient.
To secure compensation in a medical malpractice suit--for the harm placed on you—you must hire a medical malpractice law firm. Funds will be awarded to you if the medical malpractice law firm can prove that an omission or mistake was made throughout the course of your medical treatment. For example, medical malpractice law firms will secure settlements if they can prove that your doctor made a mistake diagnosing your illness or that he/she did not provide you with proper medication or treatment for that illness. The key to winning a medical malpractice suit is the standard of care. As medical malpractice law firms now, the standard of care is the generally accepted method (or methods) applied by other medical professionals in the area to care or treat for patients facing similar medical conditions.
So, for instance, say you are a 50-year old male with skin cancer living in New York. The standard of care your medical professional must abide by is the standard other medical professionals in the state of New York use to diagnose and treat skin cancer in 50-year old men. These standards will of course fluctuate based on case by case circumstances; the standard of care, for example, will be different for a 20-year-old female with skin cancer. If your medical malpractice law firm can prove your doctor did not follow or breached the standard of care for your medical condition, you have made a tremendous step in securing a settlement for your prospective claim.
That being said, proving your medical professional went against the standard of care is not enough to secure a settlement. Before medical malpractice law firms can file suits, they must be able to prove that the mistake caused you damage or further injury. Excessive or unjustified medical procedures or any medication that made the disease metastasize are good examples of damage or injuries. In summation, unless you have been harmed by the medical professional’s decision, you and your prospective medical malpractice law firm have no case.
In addition to proving the perpetuation of an injury or your medical condition, you and your medical malpractice law firm must prove that the injury is connected to the medical professional’s negligence. This aspect of a medical malpractice claim is called “causation”, meaning the damage you sustained was directly caused by the doctor’s mistake. As many medical malpractice law firms will tell you, this is the most difficult aspect of claiming a medical malpractice settlement. As a general rule, you will need to employ at least one expert witness to explain how the doctor’s mistake caused your injury. Expert witnesses are a fundamental part of your case and are employed by medical malpractice law firms. An expert witness is often a doctor or medical professional in possession of knowledge connected to your condition.
What to Know About Medical Malpractice Law Firms:
From reading the information above you can probably tell that a medical malpractice suit is extremely complicated and takes a significant amount of time to get through. You and your medical malpractice law firm have a lot to prove to win your case. To complicate matters, the defense—your doctor and his representing team of lawyers/insurance company—will put up a substantial fight.
It takes months—and sometimes years--to reach a settlement in a medical malpractice case. Additionally, you must understand that your case is constrained by your jurisdiction’s statute of limitations—these laws establish how long you have to file a medical malpractice suit against a medical professional. These time periods vary from state to state, but generally you have two years from the date of your injury to file a suit.
In addition to the statute of limitations you must be aware that these cases are not cheap. Hiring medical malpractice law firms and expert witnesses costs a lot of money—sometimes even $1,000 per hour. As a practical matter; however, you will not have to worry about immediate costs.
The bulk of medical malpractice law firms operate on a contingency basis. This simply means that your medical malpractice law firm will pay the majority of court costs up front and they will not charge attorney fees unless you win the claim. However, if you win, the medical malpractice law firm will take a large percentage of the settlement as fees and reimbursement for the costs paid. If you lose you will still be required to pay court costs but not fees to the medical malpractice law firm.
What Questions Should I Ask My Medical Malpractice Law Firm?
• Am I responsible for informing the IRS about any funds I receive from this medical malpractice suit?
• I received my medical treatment in a different state. Should I file my medical malpractice suit in the state in which I reside or am I required to file the suit in the state where I received treatment? Can you represent me in either state?
• Does my state have tort reform laws that cap how much money I can receive from a medical malpractice suit? What do I do if this cap doesn’t cover my medical bills, pain and suffering and lost wages?