The law surrounding medical malpractice is complicated, and you will need the assistance of an experienced medical malpractice attorney to help you navigate the law and achieve a successful outcome.
That being said, here are 3 common misconceptions regarding medical malpractice cases that you should be aware of:
1) Just Because Something Bad Happened, The Doctor Must Be at Fault
People sometimes believe that just because something has gone wrong, or because there was some type of complication, the doctor must have done something wrong and is therefore at fault. This is simply not true. Doctors are not machines, they’re human being and are allowed to make mistakes.
Because of this, patients are often required to sign, for example, a consent form for a medical procedure or course of treatment. When they do so, they are consenting to a wide number of risks and acknowledging that they understand what can happen to them––they might suffer nerve damage, get an infection, or die from anesthesia.
What people don’t realize is that when they sign these release forms, they are basically absolving the doctor or surgeon of liability for almost anything that might happen. This means that their medical malpractice attorney will have to fight through this consent and show that even though their injury may have been caused by a complication or a risk that they consented to, it really would not have happened if the doctor or healthcare provider had done their job properly.
2) A Medical Malpractice Case is Just Like An Auto Accident Case
People often believe that a medical malpractice case is just like an auto accident case, but they really aren’t. In order to have a medical malpractice case against a doctor or healthcare provider, you must have an expert witness who is willing to testify in court that the doctor or healthcare practitioner did something wrong. In fact, your claim may never even make it to court unless you have an expert witness to testify that the treatment you received was negligent and that this negligent treatment caused your injury.
3) Medical Malpractice Cases Are Easy to Settle
Finally, people often think that medical malpractice cases are easy to settle. They often believe that once a lawsuit is filed, the doctor will start throwing money at them and the doctor’s insurance provider will show a strong interest in settling the case.
There are all sorts of reasons why this is not the case, including the fact that whenever a doctor loses or settles a malpractice case, he or she will get reported to the National Practitioners Database––a nationwide database that tracks all of the medical malpractice cases against doctors, as well as, whether the doctor lost or settled the case.
Having a settlement listed in the National Practitioners Database is a real disincentive for doctors to settle. This is because it can seriously damage their reputation and hurt their business. For this reason, along with the fact that losing or settling a medical malpractice case can be extremely expensive, doctor and their insurance providers fight medical malpractice cases vigorously.
Contact an Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorney
Medical malpractice cases are expensive and fought very hard by doctors, their medical malpractice insurance providers, and defense attorneys. In order to win a medical malpractice case, you must prove that the doctor or health care provider acted negligently, which is often very difficult to do. To find out if you have a viable medical malpractice case, contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney.