Parkville, MD Medical Malpractice Lawyer
When we visit a doctor, we are often at our most vulnerable, physically and emotionally. While doctors should aim to help patients to the best of their ability, some doctors end up causing patients more pain.
Medical malpractice involves a legal claim for damages because a doctor or other medical professional provided treatment that fell below the standard of care. Knowing whether a doctor’s negligence caused your injuries can be tricky, and your lawyer can help you get evaluated by other medical experts. In fact, a certificate from a qualified expert is necessary to file your lawsuit. Additionally, we must make sure the case is filed within a certain amount of time. Otherwise, you risk losing your right to sue at all. Medical malpractice damages can be substantial, as plaintiffs often face mounting debts and severe emotional pain and distress. Your lawyer can help you initiate the claim, assess your damages, and obtain the evidence needed to win your case.
Our medical malpractice attorneys are available for a free assessment of your case if you call (410) 694-7291 and speak to the team at Rice, Murtha & Psoras.
How to Tell if You Experienced Medical Malpractice in Parkville, MD
Knowing you have suffered from medical malpractice is not as apparent as some might think. It is very common for injured medical malpractice victims to not realize the malpractice until long after the fact. You and your attorney should discuss the following question to determine whether you have a valid malpractice claim.
Did you receive medical care at some point in the recent past? Did your injuries worsen after receiving medical care? Did you encounter new injuries or medical conditions after receiving care? What has your doctor said about your injuries? Is there a reasonable explanation for why your injuries are worse now than before you were treated? Is there an explanation for why new injuries or conditions have cropped up?
The answers to these questions might shed some light on your situation. Medical malpractice is not always present when treatment goes wrong. In many cases, treatment is not a guaranteed cure, and doctors should be advising patients that their medical condition might not improve and other complications might be possible.
Medical malpractice is defined by the standard of care in your care. Exactly what this standard is might depend on your medical condition and other circumstances of your case. Generally, the standard is based on how other reasonable doctors would have handled your case under the same circumstances. If your doctor failed to meet the standard of care, you might have a claim for medical malpractice.
Steps to Filing a Lawsuit for Medical Malpractice in Parkville, MD
If you believe you were injured because a doctor, nurse, or other medical professional provided substandard care, your first step should be to hire an experienced lawyer. Getting a medical malpractice claim started and following it through to the end is incredibly complicated. A lawyer’s professional skills and knowledge can significantly help you through an otherwise overwhelmingly complex process.
Next, your attorney should help you obtain a certificate from a qualified expert, per Md. Code Cts. and Jud. Proc. § 3-2A-06D(b). This certificate is required for your case to move forward and must be submitted to the court within 15 days of when the discovery phase is scheduled to end. The certificate is issued by another medical professional with skills and knowledge relevant to your condition and should attest to the fact that the defendant failed to meet standards of care.
When readying your case, we must be mindful of the statute of limitations. Under Md. Code Cts. and Jud. Proc. § 5-109(a), we have only 5 years from the date the malpractice occurred or 3 years from the date the malpractice was discovered to file the case. This is a crucial difference to take note of. If you are aware of the malpractice right after it happens, we will likely abide by the 5-year statute of limitations. If you did not realize the malpractice until much later, the 3-year deadline might apply instead.
Depending on how close the deadline is to file your case, we might need to try to have the statute tolled. Tolling allows us to extend the filing deadline for specific reasons. One reason is that the doctor might have engaged in fraudulent concealment by hiding the malpractice from you to avoid liability.
Recoverable Damages in Parkville, MD Medical Malpractice Claims
Damages in these kinds of cases are famous for being substantial. Plaintiffs may be awarded compensation for the various costs and expenses of their injuries and the pain and suffering they endure. While monetary damages are not limited by statute, damages for emotional or psychological anguish may be capped.
Monetary losses should include various medical expenses from the negligent treatment. For example, the cost of your negligent medical care should be accounted for in your damages. You should also talk to your attorney about the cost of future medical care. Many plaintiffs have permanent injuries because of their doctor’s negligence, and the cost of future medical needs should be determined. For many, a lifetime of medical care can be extremely expensive.
We must also consider non-economic experiences and injuries, such as emotional damages. Medical malpractice victims not only endure a significant amount of physical pain, but they also often feel very violated. On top of that, long-term or permanent injuries might require plaintiffs to make big adjustments in their life, which can be hard to cope with.
There are limits on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases in Maryland. According to Md. Code Cts. and Jud Proc. § 3-2A-09(b), damages for non-economic injuries in Maryland medical malpractice claims are capped at $875,000. If the jury awards a higher amount, the judge will likely reduce it to align with statutory limits.
Contact Our Parkville, MD Medical Malpractice Attorneys About Your Case
Our medical malpractice attorneys can offer you a free evaluation of your case if you call (410) 694-7291 and speak to the team at Rice, Murtha & Psoras.