Consulting with a Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Although we like to think that our doctors and health service providers are faultless, the simple fact of the matter is that they are human beings and they are still capable of making mistakes. However, it is important to note that not all circumstances constitute ‘negligence' on the part of the medical professional. If a ‘reasonable' practitioner would have done the same in the same or similar circumstances, this will not constitute negligence. However, if the doctor or healthcare professional did something without taking into account all the circumstances, or did not act with the care or expertise normally required of someone in their field, this could amount to negligence.

Be Prepared for your Lawyer

When you visit a medical malpractice lawyer, it is very important that you take as much documentation with you as possible. Also, be prepared for your lawyer to request further information from you. Don't be concerned about the document you signed at the hospital prior to getting treatment, contrary to opinion, that cannot negate hospital or medical staff liability when it comes to negligence. As a patient, you are entitled to expect a certain level of care, and this cannot be waived!

Medical malpractice lawyers will ask a lot of questions about your experience. This will include describing the events prior to the treatment, while you were in hospital or being seen by doctors or other medical staff, the effects immediately afterwards and then later on. Your attorney will also be able to go through the lengthy and bureaucratic procedures necessary to obtain a full report on your case.

Determining the Validity of your Case

During the consultation process, your lawyer will listen to the circumstances you describe and will take notes. You will sign release forms that allow your attorney to gain access to your medical records. Most importantly, your lawyer will begin to ascertain whether or not, in his or her experience, you have a case. This will involve deciding whether or not your circumstances satisfy the elements required for a medical malpractice claim.

There are four specific elements required in medical malpractice claims. If even one of these elements is not met, you may not have a claim that will succeed. The elements are: that the doctor had a duty to care for you; that the doctor did not act in your best interests; that the doctor's act or omission resulted in harm being caused, or an adverse situation for you, the patient, and that as a result you suffered a loss. The loss does not have to be physical, but can be mental as well, or a combination of the two.

Time Limits

It will be the information that you provide, the actions or inactions of the medical professionals responsible for your treatment, and a review by a medical expert of your case that will determine whether or not your circumstances amount to having a claim for medical malpractice against a doctor. Because of the strict time limitations on medical malpractice claims, it is important to consult with a Medical Malpractice Attorney without delay.

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