Medical malpractice is when a medical professional fails to act as a reasonably and professionally. If a malpractice causes injury or illness to a patient, the aggrieved party can file a legal claim to seek compensation for their losses and sufferings. Medical malpractice could be due to some errors, mistakes made by a hospital, doctor, and other medical professionals. It may also involve below-standard care and failure to perform a necessary action in order to prevent causing harm to the patient. A malpractice can include failure to diagnose, prescription errors, mis-diagnosis, surgical errors, birth injuries, nursing home abuse, etc.
Medical mistakes are emerging as a national epidemic. According to Harvard research, nearly 98,000 people die each year in the United States as a result of medical malpractice. Thousands more are injured annually and suffer illness as a result of medical errors. Although the incidence rate of malpractice is high, only two percent of injured patients seek compensation through a lawsuit. A party which caused injury to a patient as a result of medical negligence or wrongdoing may generally be held liable for medical malpractice. Hospital staff like physicians, anesthesiologists, surgeons, emergency care staff, nurses, private hospitals, and government institutions may be held responsible for patient’s injuries that are caused as a result of malpractice.
In a medical malpractice case there are three things which needs be proven. Firstly, the injured party must show that the defendant (against whom the case is filed) failed to act in accordance with the established standards of medical practice. This may require an expert medical testimony confirming that the defendant committed malpractice. Next, it must be proved that the patient’s injury or suffering was caused due to negligence or wrongdoing .Lastly, the damages caused by the medical authority needs to be shown.
Medical malpractice laws in New York are customized to parameters based on a cross-section of judgments in such cases over the years. The unique social and economic environment in the state has made it necessary to include amendments that take the fair interests of both medical professionals and possible claimants into account. For instance, in New York, hospitals cannot be sued for medical malpractice in cases applicable to medical professionals who are not members of their own staff. Expert witnesses for testifying in medical cases may not be called upon to identify themselves, though their bona fides will have to be established beyond doubt. This is a rider that is peculiar to New York, as are many other aspects of medical malpractice laws. For further instance, unlike in Texas law, the state does not impose a ceiling on how much a plaintiff can claim in the form of damages.
This being the case, an effective medical malpractice lawyer in New York must obviously be finely attuned to and knowledgeable about the local laws in this field. They are not exactly helped by the fact that the fees they charge are strictly governed by statutory limitations – they can charge no more than 30% of the initial $250,000 in recovered damages, and their income decreases by 5% with every additionally recovered sum of $250,000. In connection with the N.Y. C.P.L.R. § 3045 (McKinney 1991) ruling, medical malpractice lawyers in New York are also involved in arbitration between defendants and claimants. This ruling allows a medical practitioner who has been sued for medical malpractice damages to negotiate with the claimants. Ensuring that the final sum is fair and sufficiently compensatory to their clients is another vital function that New York malpractice lawyers fulfill.
As with anything else, you’re taking your chances if you let your fingers do the walking through the yellow pages, and I suppose we could add that in these more modern times, you’re taking at least as big a risk if you let your fingers do the ‘Googling’ through the web pages. That’s not to say it isn’t a good idea to check the website of the malpractice attorney you are considering to represent you, but there are better ways to find a malpractice attorney, especially if you’re looking for one in as densely a populated attorney area as New York.
In order to obtain a list of viable and relevant attorneys in New York, one of the best places to start is at your local town or city hall. If, perhaps, you’re searching for a local attorney in New York City, call the city hall and obtain a list. Another option would be to visit the local library, whose stacks will contain legions of periodicals and journals published by attorneys. The public library can also be used as an invaluable method of narrowing down potential choices, based on trial history. One specific organization of New York lawyers is the New York State Bar Association. The group is a who’s who of attorneys in the state, and they be able to provide some valuable insight.
Lastly, another excellent organization in New York is the New York Lawyers for the Public Interest. The NYLPI is an organization of lawyers that represent under-funded victims to obtain proper compensation. The NYLPI is may be a good starting point for your search for a New York malpractice attorney because of their focus on health justice.
As for individual, accomplished lawyers in New York, you may want to start with these few:
Fitzgerald and Fitzgerald
Oshman and Mirisola
Andrew Lavatt Bluestone
Gerald M. Oginski
Remember, there is no better place to start than from a referral from a trusted acquaintance. Ask around and don’t rush into any decisions!