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!
Healthcare and the laws that govern it are changing just about every day. New regulations seem to appear out of nowhere, and the slightest mishap can land you and your employees in court. There are seven reasons why choosing hospital defense attorneys will be the best choice for you.
1. Litigation for Health Professionals
Litigation is the fast path to a lifetime income in some people’s minds. The only hope of protecting yourself and your employees is an experienced attorney.
One of the most common areas of litigation and revenue losses involves compliance issues. You want hospital defense attorneys that will inform you of any modifications, and someone who can identify problems before they arise.
3. Abuse and Fraud Charges
Qui Tam Actions, also known as whistleblower acts, are false claims. They are more prevalent than ever. The Stark Law contains several areas that increase the risk of fraud charges such as in-office ancillary services.
4. Overpayment Recovery Laws
Certifications and Licensure issues accreditation rules are forever changing. The specifics can be confusing. Licensure and certification requirement updates must be provided on a regular basis to avoid losses. A lawyer has to respond quickly and efficiently to any violations and negotiate resolutions.
5. HIPAA and Health Information Exchanges
Hospital defense attorneys will create a strategy to prevent violations and improve compliance through timely updates of changing regulations. They will oversee ‘meaningful use audits’ in pre and post payment stages under the incentive program. They will also update the facility with current shifts in the meaningful use requirements.
6. Managed Care, Medicare, and Medicaid
These navigate the federal and state regulations as well as informing the client. They create a plan to prevent violations and revenue losses. Also, they resolve disputes regarding reimbursement.
7. Fair Employment Practices
Preventing problems through adequate benefit packages and fair employment policies require the knowledge only experienced hospital defense attorneys can provide. Employees are the gears that grow the business so keeping them happy and safe is a must. However, when issues do arise, you want a rapid resolution that is satisfactory to all.
Florida medical malpractice lawyers are governed by certain laws that require them to establish with high credibility the fact that their client has a case to begin with. They must submit this in writing. If later findings reveal that there was no real and justifiable basis for a medical malpractice suit, the concerned lawyer becomes personally liable. Florida medical malpractice laws are very strict about possible defamation of the state’s medical practitioners.
Florida medical malpractice lawyers choose their clients with extreme care, since the burden of investigation as well as a considerable portion of the initial financial outlay for a case falls on them. In Florida, a full-fledged medical malpractice suit can stretch over periods of two to three years, and a lawyer stands to collect significantly only on successful completion. Deciding whether a medical malpractice case is feasible or not is one of the most vital functions of lawyers in Florida. They have to decide whether the investment of money, time and effort is balanced out by possible returns. This calls for a high degree of oversight and experience, as well as an instinctive feel of the state’s legal ‘weather’.
Another hurdle that Florida-based medical malpractice lawyers are often forced to overcome are the complex liens that govern damage settlements involving insurance-based medical care financiers such as Medicare and various Health Maintenance Organizations, or HMOs. Such organizations expect to be compensated for medical services that they have underwritten if these services have generated damages in a medical malpractice suit. If a client fails to do this, he may be slapped with a criminal case. A medical malpractice lawyer in Florida therefore walks a very thin line, and the legal fine-tuning itself can call upon unprecedented legal resources.
In an interestingly peculiar twist of law, a claimant who wins a medical malpractice case in Florida without the aid of a lawyer will still find the net value of settlement reduced by an amount comparable to a lawyer’s fees. In other words, the claimant saves nothing if he fails to engage a lawyer’s services.
People trust that their medical doctors are suitable proficient in their fields for providing services without causing additional harm. There are stringent standards in place for ensuring that licensed professionals can offer advice, perform serious procedures and implement treatment plans without creating further injuries are causing death. If you believe that you have sustained damages as the result of medical care, you should consult with a reputable attorney right away.
You need to utilize the services of a medical malpractice lawyer if you or someone you care for has been injured, even temporarily, by the negligence of a doctor or hospital. Pursuing a case of medical malpractice without the assistance and help of a qualified lawyer is really going to only be an exercise in futility for you, as you will very quickly find out.
Recent studies from the American Medical Association indicate that well over two hundred thousand people die each year because of some form of medical malpractice. While that figure is staggering in itself, just think of how many people do not die but are temporarily or even permanently injured due to medical malpractice, which is likely a significantly larger number.
This is the first thing that a good lawyer should do. He should contact all the doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers who are directly or indirectly involved in the alleged malpractice. When the lawyer contacts the involved parties, he should ask for copies of the relevant medical records.
After getting the records he should do extensive research and understand the condition that you were suffering from. He should also understand how to treat the condition.
In addition to seeking for information online, a good attorney should also seek help from an expert. For example, if you were suffering from asthma at the time of the malpractice, the attorney should contact an asthma expert and learn as much about the condition as possible. The lawyer should also ask the expert whether you were treated the right way.
At this stage the lawyer should find the people who will be witnesses in court. The attorney will determine what type of people they are, whether the jury will like them, and if they are believable.
He should also ask the witnesses to give their part of the story. After listening to all the witnesses, he should come up with a conclusion as to whether it’s wise to go to the next step.
Once the attorney has done his research and has come up with a conclusion that there was malpractice, he should file a lawsuit. He should then serve the defendants and their attorneys with copies of papers that show that a lawsuit has been filed.
Negotiations and settlement
The good thing with most medical malpractice cases is that they settle. This means that the cases don’t go to trial. The reason why the cases settle is because the insurance companies cover them.
Sometimes the negotiations towards settlement are unsuccessful and the involved parties are forced to go to trial.
At the trial stage the witnesses are asked to testify in court. To increase the chances of winning the case, the lawyer should prepare exhibits, visual aids, questions to witnesses, and opening statements. Although, an attorney should do everything possible to help you in winning the case, you should remember that the final decision lies with the judge.
The Best Qualifications in Finding a Lawyer
Proving legal malpractice is a difficult task; therefore, you need a Legal Malpractice Lawyer who is well practiced in this area to increase your chance of proving your case. An experienced lawyer has seen these types of cases and knows how the insurance company is likely to respond to avoid payment and can provide the expert resources you need to help strengthen your case.
Also, a qualified attorney is well adept in negotiations and will fight to get you the settlement you deserve, and in most cases, as quickly as possible.
Lastly, a qualified attorney is confident in his or her ability to help you win your case; therefore, he or she will not typically charge a fee unless your settlement or case is won. Also, they will also allow you to schedule a free consultation to discuss the details of your case and advise you on the best way to proceed.