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What You Should Know About Medical Malpractice Claims

Posted in: Blog // Written on behalf of Cuming & Gillespie
May 21, 2015

Our firm gets a significant number of inquiries from individuals who are concerned about the medical treatment they themselves or a loved one has received, but are unsure whether they have a viable legal claim.

The following is intended to provide important information about medical malpractice claims that may help you understand and assess options: In order to succeed in a medical malpractice claim, you need to show that the care received by the doctor, health practitioner or hospital did not meet the standard of care expected and was therefore negligent. The standard of care expected is that of a reasonable doctor, nurse, etc. in the same position. Additionally, you need to show that the negligence caused you injury. 

It is not uncommon for complications to occur in the medical field; in order to have a valid medical malpractice claim, you must be able to show that the complications resulted from the negligence. It is also important that individuals considering a medical malpractice claim understand the nature of these actions. Due to the risk of reputation involved, these claims are strongly defended by the insurers for the physicians, treatment providers, and hospitals.  Proving the claim will almost always require expert evidence both on negligence and causation, as well as quantification of the damages suffered. In terms of timing, generally you have 2 years from the date or negligence/injury in which to file a legal claim.

This limitation differs for minors, such that they typically have 2 years from their 18th birthday. In some cases, the 2 year period will only start running from the date you knew or ought to have known that the negligence of a care provider caused you injury. To ensure your claim is commenced within the applicable limitation period, it is strongly recommended that you seek legal advice as soon as possible.

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