Medical practice is one of the leading killers of people in the world. Being the victim of medical malpractice can lead to sickness, injury, or even death. It is a harrowing experience to be involved in a case of medical malpractice. Those that are supposed to help you end up causing you harm.
It is especially difficult to know what to do after you discover that you are the victim of medical malpractice. Knowing what to do would really speed up the process and cause much less trouble. The following is what you should do if you are the victim of medical malpractice:
Ensure You Have a Case
The first thing you should do if you are the victim of medical malpractice is to ensure that your claim is valid. You can be sure that the hospital will try and win the case and so should you. You should be able to prove that there was a relationship between you and the doctor or hospital. You will also need to prove that it was the doctor’s or hospital’s negligence that led to your illness, injury, or the death of a loved one.
The sickness or injury should have led to tangible damages that can be quantified. Moreover, you will have to ensure that your case is not past the statute of limitations. Only when you are sure that you have a proper standing for a medical malpractice case should you proceed with it.
A grave mistake that many victims of medical malpractice make is to loudly complain about what was done to them. They may vent about their grievances to other people either physically or online.
The best thing you can do is to be quiet and say nothing about medical malpractice. You should remember that what you say will be used against you in a court of law if lawyers find it. Therefore, avoid posting anything on social media, telling your relatives or friends, or anyone else. If you have to tell someone, find a confidential space such as the office of a therapist.
Get an Attorney
A crucial thing you should do after discovering that you are the victim of medical malpractice is to contact an attorney. They will be extremely helpful in helping you with the case. You should find a lawyer with experience arguing medical malpractice cases in your state. If you live in Washington, Virginia, or Maryland, Bertram Law Group is a large firm with many lawyers who can help. You may also choose a small law firm if you please.
A lawyer will give you the legal perspective on the case and enlighten you on many things you might not know. You will find a good lawyer by getting referrals from others who have won medical malpractice cases. You should find a lawyer fast before the statute of limitations is over in your state. In some states like California and Ohio, the window is only one year long.
Contact the Hospital
Once you and your lawyer have evaluated all the facts and have put a solid case together, you can proceed to contact the hospital. Many medical malpractice victims contact the hospital too soon which gives the hospital time to prepare.
Your first correspondence with your hospital about a medical malpractice case should be a formal notice about the lawsuit you are about to file. It will let them know that you are serious about the case. You should wait too long, however, as the statute of limitations may expire on your claim. Find out as much about the hospital as you can especially if they have previous cases of medical malpractice.
After contacting the hospital, they will attempt to resolve the case. Most medical malpractice cases are settled out of court. You should ask for adequate compensation for the damages you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice. However, have realistic expectations and know that the hospital and their lawyers will not back down easily.
In some cases, you might need to take your case to trial to receive sufficient compensation for your woes. If you do, it will mean taking a greater risk and spending more on legal fees. After going to trial, all you can do is wait for the lawyers to battle it out and see who wins. You can appeal the case if you lose the first time.
As you can see, there is a fair bit to be done if you are the victim of a medical malpractice case. The tips above should help you do all the necessary things and avoid trouble during the case. You should always keep in mind that the case might go either way and you might not receive compensation.