Port St. Lucie Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Have you or a loved one recently experienced a medical error made by a trusted physician? If so, you could be entitled to seek compensation by filing a medical malpractice claim.
No one should have to suffer from consequences both physical and mental from the wrongdoings of medical personnel. It’s the last thing anyone should prepare for as they go into surgeries or treatments. Medical staff are held to one of the highest standards since they are responsible for the health and well-being of all patients, and any error in practice can be very detrimental.
In a recent study, it was found that 250,000 Americans die every year as a result of medical errors. While sometimes the deaths that occur at medical facilities are purely accidental or not at the fault of the doctor, there are preventable deaths that still occur.
If you suspect you or your loved one have been a victim of medical malpractice in Port St. Lucie, Florida, you have the right to file a claim and seek justice against these trusted professionals. You can benefit with the help of an experienced attorney and by having proof there was a medical error made.
Before you jump into your claim, it’s important you know more about these situations and how an attorney can help. Here’s what you need to know about medical malpractice.What is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is when a medical professional makes an error in judgment and brings harm to the patient in some manner. This error in judgment can be considered as giving the wrong care, prescribing the wrong medicine, not giving the right diagnosis, making preventable errors in surgeries, neglecting to treat patients adequately, failing to take action for patient needs, and more.
Every medical facility, whether it’s an office or hospital, is expected to act and treat patients with a certain standard of care. This is because medical personnel are responsible for the health and life of each patient that walks into the facility, so how patients are treated is a very big deal. Any failure to provide a safe environment or if there is a breach of the standard of care can result in a medical malpractice claim, especially when it harms the patient.
However, it is important to understand that these instances are very complex, and there are times when things happen that are not the doctor’s or other physician’s fault. For instance, sometimes people’s bodies react to surgeries and treatments differently than most. If a person’s body does not react in an expected way during surgery and it results in the patient’s death, this may not be cause to hold the doctor liable. Only if the doctor makes an error in judgment by providing the wrong services or not treating complications correctly is the doctor at fault.
The biggest key to having a medical malpractice claim to file is having proof that the injury or premature death was a result of a wrong decision or lack thereof made by medical personnel. The best way to determine whether or not you have a claim to file is to speak with an attorney that is well versed in legal medical rules and regulations.Common Examples of Medical Malpractice Errors
The amount of errors that can constitute medical malpractice is endless since it varies in each situation. Medical malpractice errors can happen anywhere from hospitals to clinics, lab collections, surgeries, and other treatment facilities.
The specific examples of medical malpractice errors can occur in the larger areas. Here are some bigger umbrella terms and areas where medical malpractice errors can occur that have more specifics included in each scenario:
- Surgical errors
- Diagnosis errors or delayed diagnosis
- Birth injuries
- Anesthesia errors
- Failure to treat or treat appropriately
- Prescription drug errors
Just as other claims, some cases can be more traumatic and larger than others. Birth injuries, for example, can be very traumatic not just for the baby, but for the mother as well. This is one instance where errors can result in death, pain and suffering, or life-altering circumstances.
Birth injuries that require the use of medical tools can sometimes be preventable, but if they are used, other preventable injuries can occur, such as Cerebral Palsy. This occurs when the doctor uses a tool called forceps too forcefully to guide the baby out of the birth canal by latching the tool onto the baby’s fragile head. Too much force on a baby being born can result in health concerns that can completely alter the baby’s way of life or slow down their development.
Other major medical malpractice errors such as incorrect diagnosis can occur when a doctor rushes to diagnose or falsely reviews symptoms and it can lead to more complications or even death. Anesthesia errors that are made too quickly can result in too much or too little medicine given and make it where a patient can still feel the pain from a procedure.
As you can imagine, there are many different examples of medical malpractice. If you suspect you or a loved one have been a victim of medical malpractice, contact an attorney immediately to start discussing your options and what to do next.What Can Happen Due to Medical Malpractice?
There are a lot of things that can happen to a person as a result of medical malpractice, which is why these claims are so fragile. There are also many variables that go into what a person may experience based on their own instance, so not every medical malpractice is the same.
Here are some of the results that can occur due to medical malpractice errors at any facility:
- Wrongful death
- Anxiety or depression
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Physical or mental suffering
- Extreme medical bills to correct wrong care
- Loss of income due to not being able to work
- Life-altering medical conditions
- More surgeries for corrections
- Illness or disease
Every person who experiences medical malpractice errors has a different situation in damages lost that they can seek to recover. Working with an experienced Port St. Lucie Medical Malpractice attorney to see how you can recover can give you an indication of what to expect as you seek compensation. You can seek to recover from multiple damages in your medical malpractice claim. Ask your attorney for what a fair outcome would look like in your unique case.
The short answer is yes, you can sue for medical malpractice. In fact, everyone has the right to take legal action against doctors and medical facilities since they have legal obligations for how they are supposed to act and treat patients as well as offer a safe environment for all patients.
One important thing to remember is Florida’s statute of limitations that grants individuals that suffer from medical malpractice a two-year timeline to file a claim. The clock starts ticking from the day the medical error was made, but if the error is not immediately discovered, the timeline could expand to four years.
It’s best to start seeking the help of an attorney as soon as you suspect medical malpractice, so you have adequate time to build a case and find the right attorney to help.Why Are Medical Malpractice Claims So Complex?
Medical malpractice claims are one of the most difficult claims to file and win because of the medical rules and laws surrounding these facilities. There is also a lot that goes into these types of claims to establish proof of the error and that there was a relationship that existed between the doctor and the patient.
The biggest aspect of any medical malpractice is the initial proof. Before you can file a claim, an attorney can look over the evidence that you bring to establish if there is a claim to file. If they discover medical malpractice in your situation, there’s a period where other doctors who practice in the same area are consulted about their treatment methods and asked how they would have handled the medical situation. This is to compare answers with other physicians to see if your doctor did, in fact, act in a negligent manner.
This period of the process can take a while since your attorney may consult with more than one doctor, but it’s necessary for your case. The interviews and statements from other physicians can serve as evidence against the physician you’re suing to demonstrate the breach of care.
Medical malpractice claims are also complex because hospitals and treatment facilities have their own regulations in place that protect them from easily being sued. This is why most of the time, patients are required to sign waivers and other documents stating their acknowledgment of potential risks and injury associated with treatments so that the doctor and other personnel are legally protected.
If you signed a waiver, let your attorney know so they can review it and compare it with the rest of your claim.What is a Medical Malpractice Lawyer & What Do They Do?
A medical malpractice lawyer is an attorney you will consult with and hire to assist you with your claim. It is advised that you do not attempt to handle this legal matter yourself, given the complicated nature of these claims. A medical malpractice lawyer can be your best option for seeking compensation and bringing justice for the trauma you’ve experienced.
A medical malpractice lawyer has the background and knowledge in this particular area to build a strong case and adequately review your position and the physician’s position. These professionals have extensive knowledge of medical laws and possess the right skills for these claims.
Your medical malpractice attorney can:
- File a claim on your behalf
- Speak to other related physicians
- Review and gather all evidence
- Become your advocate
- Negotiate for a fair settlement
The process of finding the right medical malpractice attorney is not difficult but should be thorough. While you keep the two-year timeline in mind, it’s important that you search for the best attorney out there to give your case the fighting chance it deserves.
Since these claims are fragile and involve the health and well-being of a person, one of the top qualities you should search for in the right attorney is their experience. Attorneys that have years of experience handling similar cases signifies the lawyer knows what to expect and how to build your case.
Another important factor to have in an attorney is one that knows how to communicate well and can collaborate effectively with you. You will want to be kept up to speed with developments in your case and understand what’s going on. As you consult with each attorney, ask how often they will consult with you and what their preferred method of communication is, so you know what to expect.
Lastly, you should ask about their legal fees. Attorneys can be an investment, but rest assured that most personal injury attorneys do not accept payment unless you win your case.
Your attorney may decide to be compensated on an hourly basis or with a contingency fee. Contingency fees are a certain percentage you agree to pay your attorney from your total settlement. These fees can range anywhere from 33%-40%.
Whichever the agreed-upon payment method is, it’s important that you have your agreement in writing so that it’s signed by your attorney to avoid future payment issues.How to Recover Damages in Medical Malpractice Cases
When it comes to determining what damages you are seeking to recover in your case, know that you can seek to recover more than one. Your attorney will review what you have lost and help you understand the general, special, and punitive damages you may be eligible to recover through a settlement.
Here are some damages you can seek to recover in a medical malpractice claim:
- Physical and mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Money associated with medical bills
- Lost work wages
- Compensation for errors or wrongdoing of medical physician
It’s important to keep all records of money lost due to an error and any medical records that are associated with the mistake as well. For instance, if you had to have corrective surgery from the error that was made, the cost of the corrective surgery can be recovered. If you have suffered physically or mentally as a result of the error, this is another damage you can seek to recover as well.The Medical Malpractice Claim Process
Know that these types of claims will not be resolved quickly and easily. It can take several years to settle a medical malpractice claim, given all of the interviews and investigations that need to take place.
When it comes to seeking your settlement, this can be done either through mediation or in court if the physician foregoes a settlement. Most medical malpractice claims do not wind up in court unless the organization does not agree on a settlement.How Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers Can Help
Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers is a firm in Florida that’s been serving residents of the Port St. Lucie area and many others for the last forty years (by appointment only). Our attorneys are highly awarded, knowledgeable, and skilled in order to best help you. We take pride in our work and serving the community, which means we have your best interest in mind 24/7.
We understand that suffering from medical malpractice errors can be very upsetting and detrimental, which is why we want to help you seek the compensation you deserve. To get started, call our office at (561) 800-8000 or fill out our online case evaluation form so we can contact you about scheduling a day and time to come in. You will meet one-on-one with an attorney that will be assigned to your case so you can discuss your situation further and hear about how we will help.
When you come in for your consultation, please bring the following items:
- Medical bills and records
- Insurance information
- Evidence you may have
- Other information pertaining to the accident
Don’t let any more time pass by without giving us a call. If you want to make strides in your claim and bring justice to you and/or your loved ones, talk to one of our attorneys today.