If you are considering filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, there are a few factors that you should know more information about before jumping in. In fact, even if you were recently under the care of a doctor and they made a mistake—whether it was your diagnosis, your treatment, or your aftercare—it does not necessarily mean it constitutes as medical malpractice. To properly file a medical malpractice lawsuit, there are a few questions you should answer. It can also be extremely helpful to get the advice of a trusted attorney who can walk you through your lawsuit and ensure you have all the pieces you need before filing so that it goes as smoothly as possible. To better establish if you have a legitimate medical malpractice lawsuit, try answering some of the questions below.
Can You Establish Your Doctor Had a Duty Of Care?
One of the first things that a court will look at is whether your doctor owed you a duty of care. This is usually one of the easier things to prove in this type of lawsuit because it is typically a doctor-patient relationship where one can easily establish that there was a duty owed.
Did Your Doctor Breach That Duty?
If your doctor did not fulfill that duty, then they breached the expected duty of care that they owed you. This breach likely came in the form of some type of injury. There are many examples of how a doctor can breach their duty. These are:
- Your doctor failed to give you the right prescription drugs for your specific illness.
- Your doctor failed to diagnose your illness when another medical practitioner demonstrating the reasonable standard of care would have.
- Your surgeon left a tool inside your body before he or she sewed you up.
- Your doctor treated you for the wrong disease.
What Injury Was Caused?
While a doctor may have breached his or her duty, if there is no injury, you likely do not have much of a case. However, if that breach of duty directly caused your injury, you are beginning to accumulate evidence. For example, if your doctor did not give you the right medication and your illness got worse, this is an injury. Likewise, if you surgeon left a surgical tool inside of you that started an infection, this is also a type of injury you might sustain. Remember, you must be able to directly link the breach of duty to your injury.
Gathering Your Evidence
This can be incredibly valuable when you seek help from a medical malpractice attorney offers. They can seek help from other medical experts who can speak to whether there were medical errors, how the breach of duty links to your injury, and whether someone else demonstrating reasonable care would also have made those mistakes. While a lawyer is not necessary for filing your lawsuit, retaining one can be the difference in winning or losing your case.