Medical Negligence Attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL, Representing Malpractice Victims in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
We hold healthcare professionals to the highest professional standards, but sometimes they can make mistakes. Although to err is human, mistakes are unacceptable if they happen due to negligence. When that happens, call our West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyers.
Not every case amounts to medical malpractice. Even those that do can be difficult to prove, so it's important to consult medical malpractice attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL, as soon as possible. A lawyer will help you prepare a strong claim and negotiate with the hospital’s lawyers for a fair settlement.
About the area section with statistics
When to Hire Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
It’s possible to file a malpractice claim when a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare professional fails to maintain a “reasonable person standard of care” to you or a loved one. That means the kind of care a reasonable person with the same training would be expected to give.
For example, you would expect a reasonable doctor to test for blood type before surgery or double-check to ensure they operate on the right body part. You certainly wouldn’t expect them to leave a 13-inch metal retractor in your body, yet all these cases did happen. Other signs of medical negligence include:
- Failure to exhaust all available diagnostic methods and options
- Misdiagnosis, which can be confirmed by getting a second medical opinion
- Wrong treatment methods or medication errors
- Unusual injuries, such as an injured baby during birth or surgical errors
- Failure to inform the patient of all risks and secure consent before a procedure
- Delayed diagnosis or treatment, leading to unnecessary suffering
- Lack of proper and required tools, equipment, staff, and supplies
If you suspect that you or a loved one suffered unnecessary injury or even death as a result of medical negligence, it's a good idea to consult West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyers.
Elements of a Medical Malpractice Claim
When medical malpractice in West Palm Beach causes personal injury or wrongful death, it can be difficult to stand up against that injustice and seek legal help. But it’s important to do something against it so that no one else suffers the same tragedy.
When you decide to take legal action against a doctor, nurse, clinic, or hospital, you have to do it right. Hiring a West Palm Beach medical negligence attorney in West Palm Beach, FL, can make your case significantly easier.
First, your case must meet the minimum elements of a medical malpractice claim as allowed by the law in West Palm Beach and throughout Florida.
Existence of a Doctor-Patient Relationship
You may need to show proof that the doctor owed the patient a duty of care at the time of the incident. This is a vital point, particularly where the patient was under a team of doctors or where some time passed before the incident happened.
Insurance companies may argue the doctor in question shouldn’t be considered to have been treating the patient because they were only consulting. They may also claim that enough time passed that the patient was no longer in their care.
Standard of Care
You must show that the healthcare provider didn’t provide care to generally accepted standards. In other words, any other reasonable doctor would have acted differently and avoided the mistake. If another doctor would have acted the same, there are no grounds for a malpractice lawsuit.
Similarly, a genuine mistake may not meet the threshold for a malpractice lawsuit in West Palm Beach unless negligence, carelessness, or malicious intent are clearly involved.
The negligence of the healthcare provider led to injury, illness, or death that wouldn’t otherwise have occurred. It may seem obvious, but the case has to pass a logical test. Would the injury have happened if the doctor or nurse hadn’t acted the way they did? If no, then the cause is proven.
If multiple causes are involved, then the contribution of each factor to the injury is weighed to determine if it “substantially contributed” to the injury.
Finally, the case must show the patient suffered actual damages as a result of the malpractice. For example, the patient’s condition worsened, they suffered pain and suffering, or death.
Filing a Malpractice Claim in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
There’s a step-by-step process for filing malpractice claims in Florida that involves filing a lot of paperwork and navigating subtle legal procedures. By Florida Statutes under Title XLV Chapter 766.106, you must:
- Notify all defendants, by certified mail with return receipt requested, of your intent to file a lawsuit.
- Your notice of intent must include a list of healthcare providers who treated you two years before the alleged malpractice and after the injuries.
- Include copies of all medical records pertinent to the claim
- Include a written opinion from a medical expert affirming that reasonable grounds exist to believe the defendant engaged in medical malpractice.
Once this is done, the defendants should respond to the notice of intent within 90 days. This gives them and their insurance company to investigate the claims and determine if there is liability for the injuries. This can be done through an internal or independent external review.
The reply can be an offer to settle, engage in arbitration, or an outright rejection. Remember that at this point, the defendants will be working through the best defense lawyers available to fight your claim.
It’s vital to have experienced and skilled West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyers fighting for you to ensure you get the best settlement terms. They will also ensure you don’t get tricked into admitting liability or bogged down with endless bureaucracy.
Examples of Damages You Can Recover
Once your case has been proven, you can recover compensation for different kinds of economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are those that have a real and specific monetary value, such as medical costs and lost wages. Non-economic damages are those that lack a specific financial value, such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Compensation in medical malpractice cases may not restore what you’ve lost, but it can hold the at-fault party responsible for their actions and help provide for your family.
Talk to Medical Negligence Attorneys in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
Given the complexity of medical malpractice cases, it’s vital to work with qualified, highly skilled, and experienced medical negligence attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL. A lawyer specializing in this area of law will be a big help whether or not your case goes to trial.
Domnick Cunningham & Yaffa is a team of some of the most decorated personal injury lawyers with a specialization in medical malpractice. We’ll review your case for free with no obligation to hire us, so talk to us today for a confidential consultation and we’ll help you fight for your rights.