The mistakes happen in the medical field more often than any of us would like to believe. Doctors as well as other members of the hospital staff can make wrong decisions in certain situations and cause serious health damages to the patient. In these instances, it’s important to know your rights and what are the appropriate legal steps you could take.
Basically, there are two ways this could go. You can negotiate with the insurance company and try to come to an agreement. However, if that fails, you can officially file a medical malpractice lawsuit. In this situation, whether you should get compensated or not will be decided by the judge or a jury. This type of procedure has its stages and this is what you should know.
Contact an Attorney
If you believe you have been the victim of medical malpractice, one of the first steps you should take is hiring an attorney. Although there are certain legal things you can handle on your own, it’s still strongly recommended to get someone who has professional experience in managing this type of situation.
Before deciding which one you should hire, make sure you schedule a consultation meeting during which you will present your case to them. As stated by the professionals at https://www.wilsonlaw.com/, qualified representatives will be able to tackle even the most difficult of cases. They will be able to analyze the situation and tell you their opinion about how you should go about it. The first meeting is usually free of charge and will allow you to assess whether that specific attorney is a good match for you.
Upon hearing about your situation, a lawyer will be able to inform you about what’s necessary to start the procedure, what are the deadline for filing a lawsuit and what are your chances of winning in the end. Your legal representative will then focus on investigation and gathering evidence to prove your claims.
Acquiring Medical Records
Access to medical documentation is extremely important in these situations. These documents will be the core of the potential lawsuit and will give your attorney significant insight, allowing them to determine what will be the appropriate course of action.
They will probably request an opinion of a medical expert who can explain to them in detail what exactly is written in the report. If the case goes to court, this expert might be asked to testify and give its professional assessment.
Informing Insurance Company
Before you officially file a lawsuit, you should notify the insurance company and the hospital about your plans. This will trigger them to go over your case and see how strong of a case you have. If you believe you don’t have enough evidence to prove negligence, they will not be motivated to talk to you. However, if the situation is serious, they will try to reach some kind of agreement outside the courtroom.
Make sure you don’t discuss any type of settlement without your attorney present. Insurance adjusters might try and convince you to answer their questions but you simply refer them immediately to your legal representative. Given the fact that these companies are working for profit, don’t expect them to agree to your compensation request. They will probably try to give you less.
Filing a Lawsuit
Once you do this, it means you are prepared to go to court. In the documents you submit, you will have to cite the allegation against the doctor. Whether it’s a misdiagnosis that leads to a wrong treatment or the failure to provide you with the appropriate therapy, it should be clearly stated as well as the identity of the person or entity you are suing.
Depending on the state, you will have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit. Usually, it’s somewhere between 2 and 3 years. That’s why it’s important to start the whole process of gathering evidence as soon as possible. The average length of a medical malpractice suit can last anywhere between a few months to a few years, so it’s important to understand what you’re getting yourself into.
Medical malpractice cases are known for their complexity. Getting in the ring with insurance companies is never easy but if you were truly wronged by those who were supposed to take care of you, then filing a lawsuit is a step in the right direction. An experienced attorney will be able to guide you through the whole procedure with care and explain what are the best options for your particular case.