Six Issues to Consider Before Filing a Medical Malpractice Suit
Written By: Rheingold, Valet, Rheingold, Ruffo & Giuffra LLP
Getting injured due to a medical mistake is a shocking and overwhelming experience. Your doctor, especially a doctor you trust to take care of you when you go under anesthesia, occupies a unique place. Doctors get to know the most intimate part of a person, be it their body or their mind. Any violation, even an accidental or negligent one, can be devastating. As a result, you may want to immediately file a lawsuit. Before you do, here are six issues to consider.
First, litigation can become very expensive. Not every medical malpractice case is worth the time and expense to litigate. Speak with an attorney, he or she can go over your options and discuss what is realistically attainable.
Second, consider the strength of your evidence. Your evidence will be your own testimony, the testimony of any other witnesses, medical reports and your physical injuries. An attorney can go over the relative weight and reliability of your evidence, which will factor into your lawsuit.
Third, suing the correct person or entity is not always abundantly clear. For example, you may have been injured due to a medication mistake but if the doctor prescribed it correctly, then you cannot sue the doctor. But you may be able to sue the hospital.
Fourth, are you emotionally prepared for litigation? Medical malpractice cases can especially bring up complicated emotions. If you were grievously injured, you will be asked to describe your injuries and how they impact your daily life. It will be difficult.
Fifth, choose your attorney carefully. Your case will rise and fall based upon the skill and dedication of your attorney. Don't be afraid to solicit multiple offers. You need to be comfortable with your advocate.
Finally, there are time limits on when you can file a lawsuit. An attorney can go over the applicable limit usually, it is a number of years.
If a doctor committed a medical mistake during your procedure then you may have an actionable medical malpractice claim. A lawyer can help you sort through the confusion and legal issues to determine if a lawsuit is the best course of action. This is a confusing and emotional event, a lawyer is a good person to keep you anchored and to maintain perspective.