The first medical malpractice cases in the United States centered around a breach of contract and not failure to adhere to a standard of care. This meant that the defendant physician made some sort of express promise to skillfully render care and obtain a good result. Failure to do so was grounds for a suit. Five years after George Washington's inauguration, the country saw its first recorded medical malpractice lawsuit. A man sued the surgeon who operated on his wife and caused her to die, despite having made promises to the two that he would operate skillfully and safely. This breach of contract case resulted in a plaintiff verdict and an award of 40 pounds.

If the doctor's mistake was one that a reasonable doctor would make, he has not acted negligently and has not committed medical malpractice. Often when a doctor fails to diagnose a medical problem, he may mistake the problem for something else and attempt to treat that. Likewise, if the medical problem is extremely rare, unknown, or difficult to identify, than a proper diagnose may not be possible.

Doctor Liability, Damages – In this category of cases the patient can prove that the doctor was negligent, and that negligence was the cause of the patient’s injury.  These are the situations most likely to end favorably for the injured party.  Attorneys are more likely to take cases they believe will be easy to prove.  When attorneys can easily prove physician liability, costs are lower and the client will receive more of the damage award.  In other words, less money will be deducted from the patient’s award.


There was a violation of the standard of professional conduct - The law acknowledges that there are certain legal standards that are recognized by the profession as being acceptable conduct. These standards of professional conduct are largely determined by the ethics rules of the state bar association. Attorneys have an obligation to their clients and the bar to operate within these standards. Clients have the right to expect attorneys will follow the law, behave in an ethical and honest manner, act in the best interests of their clients with integrity, diligence and good faith, and will execute their matters at a level of competency that protects their legal rights. Lawyers must also maintain and supply clients with full and detailed reports of all money and/or property handled for them. Finally, attorneys must not inflict damage on third parties through frivolous litigation or malicious prosecution. If it is determined that the standards of professional conduct have been violated, then negligence may be established.
The injured patient must show that the physician acted negligently in rendering care, and that such negligence resulted in injury. To do so, four legal elements must be proven: (1) a professional duty owed to the patient; (2) breach of such duty; (3) injury caused by the breach; and (4) resulting damages. This includes doing nothing when they should have done something. This may be considered an act of omission or a negligence.
If you are considering a medical negligence claim and you are thinking of contacting Been Let Down to discuss your claim, we would first arrange a consultation over the telephone; this initial call is free, and there is no obligation to proceed. During this phase of the claims process, we will take the time to listen to the details of your claim in detail.

Medical malpractice cases almost always require medical experts to testify about the proper standard of care that should have been provided under the circumstances. These are often physicians who practice within the same type of medicine that the physician defendant practices in. These individuals are usually tasked with the responsibility of explaining that the defendant deviated from the standard of care and that this deviation resulted in the patient suffering the harm alleged in the complaint.
Medical malpractice lawsuits typically have a short statute of limitations. This means that you don’t have much time after your injury to start the lawsuit. If you miss the deadline, your case will be thrown out regardless of the facts. Most states have a statute of limitations of three years or less. Some states extend the deadline if you had no way of knowing you were injured for months or years after a negligent medical procedure, however.
Canada’s provincial health insurance plans are generally similar, but do have some differences.  For example, the Province of Quebec has more generous prescription drug coverage than any other province.  However, the similarities are far greater than the differences.  One of the major reasons for this is that in order to qualify for federal subsidies, provincial health insurance plans must adhere to the guidelines set out in the Canada Health Act.[5]  The one guideline that has been the subject of the most controversy over the years has concerned “extra-billing.”  The Canada Health Act does not allow the provinces to permit physicians to bill patients for a portion of their services through co-payments or other types of additional fees.  The federal government has remained firm in this position for many years on the grounds that it does not want to see the creation of two-tiered systems in which patients who could afford to pay for a portion of their health care would receive more comprehensive coverage and preferential treatment compared to those who could not afford additional health costs.  In the past, some provinces have lost a portion of their transfer funds for allowing some extra-billing, but a number would still like to be able to allow for extra-billing in certain cases in order to help keep their costs down without having to pay a penalty in the form of reduced transfer payments.

You may have a medical malpractice claim in Virginia if your health care provider’s negligence caused your injury or harm A bad outcome alone isn’t proof of medical negligence, but it may be a sign that you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney to investigate your situation and evaluate your legal rights. We do not recommend taking on this type of case by yourself. Virginia’s medical negligence laws favor defendant health care providers.


As a nurse and a patient (of medical and psychiatric docs) I think that if a doc lies when obtaining informed consent, that is clearly NOT ok - not sure if that is malpractice and/or a licensure issue. I think asking about complications rates and experience with a particular procedure are absolutely appropriate questions, for any MD. When you read articles for consumers about how to get good care, these are questions you are encouraged to ask!!! If the doc has had little experience and/or complications, doc can have prepared a statement explaining why he feels adequately prepared in this case, what is different about this case in terms of risk of complications(such as 'other pt. had another serious illness that increased risk, etc.)
^ Department of Revenue v. Kuhnlein, 646 So.2d 717, 721 (Florida Supreme Court 1994) ("The State next argues that the cause below was barred by the state's sovereign immunity, by an alleged common law rule that no one is entitled to the refund of an illegal tax, and by the requirements of Florida's refund statutes. Even if true, these are not proper reasons to bar a claim based on constitutional concerns. Sovereign immunity does not exempt the State from a challenge based on violation of the federal or state constitutions, because any other rule self-evidently would make constitutional law subservient to the State's will. Moreover, neither the common law nor a state statute can supersede a provision of the federal or state constitutions.").
Medical malpractice among doctors is a serious issue nationwide. If you have been injured as a result of a serious medical mistake, you should seek legal consultation to discuss filing a medical malpractice claim against your doctor. Proving medical malpractice is not always easy and often requires the expert testimony of another health care provider, who must testify that medical negligence occurred in your case.
The Lexington, Kentucky Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center was one of the first to introduce such a program. Non-economic benefits to medical professionals included the promotion of ethical, honest behavior, and benefits to patients and their loved ones included a truthful account of what occurred, an apology, and potentially an offer of compensation. The VA also benefited financially – it became the VA hospital with the lowest malpractice payouts. Also, their average length of cases decreased from 2-4 years to 2-4 months.
With the exception of a small minority of cases, the Florida medical malpractice statute of limitations is a hard and fast rule. Consequently, if you fail to file a claim or lawsuit for medical malpractice within the allotted time frame, you will be precluded from ever seeking monetary damages in your case. If you suspect that you sustained an injury or illness as a result of doctor negligence, you should contact the medical malpractice lawyers at Dolman Law Group as soon as possible.
“We comply, where applicable, with the SRA Code of Conduct 2011 published by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, and any solicitor [or registered European lawyer] to whom we may refer you is an independent professional from whom you will receive impartial and confidential advice. You are free to choose another solicitor [or registered European lawyer]"

Canada’s provincial health insurance plans do not cover all services.  Dental care, eye exams, and cosmetic surgery are three examples of services that generally are not covered.  However, most Canadian employees have supplemental medical insurance provided by their employers that give at least partial coverage for these services.  For example, supplemental insurance will usually cover one eye exam and one pair of glasses per year.  Many collective bargaining agreements provide for supplemental insurance.  In other cases, supplemental insurance is offered as a non-mandated work benefit, but it is not required.
The Syracuse medical malpractice lawyers of Michaels & Smolak have recovered millions of dollars for clients injured by medical malpractice and for other injuries to cover their medical bills, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and more. If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, contact us for a free consultation with an experienced lawyer who can inform you of your legal rights and maximize your compensation.
After a suit is filed, both parties gather information from the other. For example, the plaintiff’s attorney will request their client’s medical records from the defendant. There will then be interrogatory forms (a set of written questions to clarify facts) submitted by each attorney to the opposing party, and depositions (formal meetings in which an individual  –  such as the plaintiff, the defendant, or an expert for either party  –  is questioned under oath). A record of these depositions is taken for potential use in court. Usually, the people who attend the deposition include attorneys for both parties and the court reporter. In some cases, the plaintiff or defendant can also choose to attend to observe, but does not talk or ask questions. Sometimes, the defendant and their attorney will agree to settle the case prior to court  –  that is, the defendant pays the plaintiff a mutually agreed upon amount called a “settlement.”
It is also important that you answer all our questions fully and truthfully, as any missing or incorrect information given could severely reduce the chances of winning the case or securing the maximum compensation. It is also worth noting that there is a time limit of three years which applies to clinical negligence claims. We will discuss this with you during our initial telephone call to determine the best we can whether you are within time to bring the claim.
The principle was not mentioned in the original United States Constitution. The courts have recognized it both as a principle that was inherited from English common law, and as a practical, logical inference (that the government cannot be compelled by the courts because it is the power of the government that creates the courts in the first place).[10]
Arizona lawmakers in 2012 passed a similar bill to prohibit wrongful birth lawsuits, though the legislation included exceptions in cases of an “intentional or grossly negligent act or omission.” Arizona State Sen. Nancy Barto (R-Phoenix) introduced the bill because she claimed wrongful birth lawsuits negatively affect children with disabilities. “True malpractice suits,” Barto said, would be allowed to proceed.

Unfortunately, just because one of these things occurs does not mean you have a claim. Medicine is not an exact science, and the law does not obligate doctors to be error-free 100 percent of the time. If doctor error occurs but there is no breach of a standard of care, you may not have a strong claim. If however, doctor error occurs and there is a breach of a standard of care, then malpractice may have occurred.

Medical malpractice is the most common legal claim lodges against doctors. A medical malpractice claim arises when a doctor failed to treat the patient in conformance with the accepted medical standard of care and the patient suffered some injury as a result. The medical standard of care is the type of care that another physician in a similar community practicing in the same type of medicine would have provided within the same circumstances.


This is a crucial determination. Just because medical negligence occurred at a hospital, it doesn't necessarily follow that the facility itself can be held responsible. If your case is based on sub-standard care provided by an individual doctor, and that doctor is an independent contractor (and not an employee of the hospital), you need to pursue action against the doctor him/herself. In many cases, you can't sue a hospital for a doctor's treatment error, unless the doctor is an employee of the hospital (most are not), or when the doctor's incompetence should have been obvious to the hospital.

While an investigation against your doctor could lead to the revocation of his license, such action is rare. Only in the most extreme cases, where the Board feels that your doctor is a threat to the well-being of his patients, will his or her license be revoked. The Board could decide to take lesser action such as limiting his license, issuing a censure and reprimand, or require him or her to attend training.
Expert witnesses must be qualified by the Court, based on the prospective experts qualifications and the standards set from legal precedent. To be qualified as an expert in a medical malpractice case, a person must have a sufficient knowledge, education, training, or experience regarding the specific issue before the court to qualify the expert to give a reliable opinion on a relevant issue.[14] The qualifications of the expert are not the deciding factors as to whether the individual will be qualified, although they are certainly important considerations. Expert testimony is not qualified "just because somebody with a diploma says it is so" (United States v. Ingham, 42 M.J. 218, 226 [A.C.M.R. 1995]). In addition to appropriate qualifications of the expert, the proposed testimony must meet certain criteria for reliability. In the United States, two models for evaluating the proposed testimony are used:

In addition to notifying a health care provider that you intend to file a lawsuit, prior to filing suit in most jurisdictions, the injured patient must usually submit an affidavit or certificate from a qualified expert. This affidavit or certificate is usually completed by another doctor who can testify that there are reasonable grounds to determine that medical negligence or medical malpractice took place in a given case. Again, the exact requirements of the certificate vary from state to state and across jurisdictions.


We consider all cases on a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), also known as a No Win No Fee agreement. This means that if you are not successful in pursuing your claim, we will not charge you any of our base legal costs. If we are successful with your claim, we submit the costs which we have incurred in pursuing the claim to the defendant/s and or their insurers. We are also entitled to charge a success fee, which will be deducted from your recoverable damages at the end of the claim. However, we can offer a competitive success fee and our aim will always to beat a success fee offer by any other firm. This means that we aim to beat the terms offered by other law firms and you will receive more of your compensation.
An average person does not know how to correctly file a report against a doctor who has committed medical malpractice.  Further complicating matters is the fact that each state has its own procedure for filing complaints against physicians.  Generally, you should file the complaint with your state’s medical board.  Each state has its own medical board and its own forms and requirements for filing complaints against doctors.
^ Faulty Data and False Conclusions: The Myth of Skyrocketing Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Lewis L. Laska, J.D., Ph.D. and Katherine Forrest, M.D., M.P.H. Commonweal Institute, October 6, 2004. From the report, "The premise that medical malpractice awards have been rising dramatically in the United States in recent years, driving up the cost of healthcare and forcing physicians out of practice, is not supported by relevant evidence."
However, bringing a lawsuit is not for everyone. Weigh your options. If your fear of “looking bad” to family or friends outweighs your desire to bring a malpractice suit against your doctor for an injury he caused you or a loved one, bringing a suit may not be the best option for you. On the other hand, if your need or want to bring suit against your doctor outweighs your fear, taking action against your physician may be the right choice for you.
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