When we are sick, we trust that our doctors, hospitals, and other healthcare workers will help us get better. We don’t expect a doctor, nurse, or any healthcare professional will commit a wrongdoing or act negligently leading to injuries or death. Sadly, cases of medical negligence in New York cause traumatic injuries or death in patients who placed their trust in a doctor, hospital, or healthcare provider.
Yes, you know that your medical provider committed malpractice, but what do you do? Medical malpractice cases and claims are the most difficult to file and argue in court, therefore, never do it on your own. Below are the first steps to take in a medical malpractice case.
- Hire a Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you believe that your injuries were due to medical negligence, contact a competent law firm like Powers & Santola LLP for legal advice. Trying to file and argue the case by yourself will only be counterproductive.
For instance, the attorney will help you file a case before the statute of limitations is up. Further, they know the right court processes and documents to present before a judge and counter the arguments of opposing lawyers in the case.
Having a lawyer on your side is your best bet of getting the rightful compensation for your injuries.
- Get Your Medical Records
The medical records or documentation are a necessity in proving your case. The content in these documents can make or break your case. And remember, these documents are held under doctor-patient confidentiality. Therefore, you should obtain them yourself or sign a privacy waiver allowing the attorney to get the records for you.
The medical records give your lawyer an in-depth understanding of your case. It also allows them to seek a second opinion from a competent doctor. If the medical experts find out that the treatment you got did not meet the standard level of care, is a plus for your case.
- Contact The Insurance Company
Your attorney should contact the hospital and the insurance company of your intent to file a lawsuit for medical negligence. And yes, the case can be settled at this stage without the need to file a formal suit in court.
However, you should be careful of early settlement proposals. In most cases, the amount is below the compensation amount you deserve. Now you see why you need an attorney; they’ll ensure you don’t accept an offer less than what you deserve.
- File an Official Complaint
An official complaint is a document that cites all the allegations you’re bringing against a doctor or hospital for negligence. The complaint is what triggers a lawsuit to start shortly afterward.
And yes, this process is difficult unless you know when and how to file this complaint. A competent attorney will easily handle this case better than you. Remember, filing complaints is their job, they went to school and got trained to do this.
Filing an official complaint is a critical step in your quest for compensation. As earlier stated, it triggers the lawsuit process, and hence the need to ensure it is done correctly as it directly impacts your case.
The last thing anyone wishes for is to suffer injuries due to medical negligence. If this happens, then the patient deserves fair compensation for the pain and losses. All this is dependent on the strength of your case in court.