Medical malpractice can wreak havoc on your life. It can leave you with serious injuries or a worsened medical condition, and your prognosis may be poor. This, in turn, can increase your medical expenses, limit your ability to work, and leave you with extensive pain and suffering that can cause you to lose enjoyment of life. This is unacceptable, which is why you should do everything in your power to hold negligent medical professionals and their employers accountable for the harm that they’ve caused to you.
At first glance, a medical malpractice case may seem straightforward. After all, you only have to prove that a doctor-patient relationship existed, that a duty of care was owed, that the duty was breached, and that harm was caused by that breach. But the truth of the matter is that these cases are far more challenging than they may seem.
That being said, there are things that you can do to build your case so that you can maximize your chances of finding accountability and recovering the compensation that you’re owed. Let’s take a look at some of the steps that you can take:
- Obtain your medical records: Your medical records can lay out a telling story. Your medical professional’s observations and orders will be listed in there, as well as any complications that you may have faced. In other words, your medical records may paint a step-by-step picture of what your medical professional did, which you can then use to show why those actions led to a breach of the applicable standard of care.
- Talk to your medical professional: Before you even hint that you’re going to take legal action, you may want to talk to your doctor to try to get a better understanding of what happened to cause your injuries. Many medical professionals are open and honest about mistakes that were made, which you can then use to support your claim.
- Get an affidavit: Before you can proceed with a medical malpractice claim, you’ll have to submit what’s known as an affidavit of merit. This document, which must be submitted within 90 days of filing your claim, must come from a medical expert and attest that your medical professional was negligent in providing you with care. Keep in mind, too, that your claim has to be filed within two years of the discovery of the medical malpractice.
- Consult with witnesses and experts: Outside of the affidavit of merit, you may want to speak with other experts who can attest not to just causation, but also to the extent of your damages. Your own doctor may be able to help you here, but so, too, could an employment expert. Don’t neglect to contact other witnesses, either. Nurses and other medical staff may be just as pivotal to your case as an expert witness.
- Know what you want out of your case: A lot of medical malpractice cases end up settling before they get to trial. So, going into your case, you should know that there’s a decent chance that you’ll be offered a settlement. Know what to expect here and what you want out of a settlement before accepting it. This will require a thorough analysis on your part, but your attorney can help you there.
Don’t be pushed around by doctors and their employers
Doctors and hospitals are often represented by teams of competent attorneys who know the system and how to maneuver for the best outcomes for their clients. Don’t let that daunt you, though. Instead, let it motivate you to aggressively work to build the most compelling case possible under the circumstances. If you think that you’d like help in that regard, then take comfort knowing that legal professionals stand ready to give your voice the amplitude that it deserves.