Understanding The Most Important Factors in a Medical Malpractice Claim
The backbone of all medical malpractice claims is substantial proof that the victim received a substandard level of care. Victims must also prove that the care they were provided was negligent and that this negligence directly caused a provable illness or injury. Due to the exceptional amount of grey area in medical malpractice claims – along with the amount of leeway given to doctors and medical providers – proving medical negligence can be complicated, time consuming and is best handled by an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Washington D.C and Maryland. Every case is slightly different in specifics. However, there are four key factors that play heavily into the outcome of any medical malpractice claim. We explore each of these in this article.
Important factors in medical malpractice claims
When determining the viability of a medical malpractice claim, there are four factors that are typically considered to be paramount. These include:
- Doctor-Patient Relationship. If a medical professional is not under any obligation to act on behalf of the victim, there is no viable case. Therefore, providing a duty to act is critical in successfully litigating a malpractice lawsuit. The patient’s attorney must first prove that the health care provider in question was under an obligation – or had a duty – to act in adherence with the generally accepted standard of care levels for a provider of his or her skill and training level. Without successfully proving this “Doctor-Patient” relationship, a case cannot be made.
- Proof of Negligent Care. Proving that the care you received was negligent is vital for successful litigation. This means that through the combined efforts of expert witnesses and an experienced medical malpractice attorney, you must be able to prove that the provider failed to provide a level of care that is expected of someone of his or her training and skill level – and was therefore negligent. Generally speaking, expert witnesses will testify on the standard of care generally expected in procedures such as yours and then compare these levels with what was provided to you to prove negligence on the part of the defendant.
- Proof That Negligent Care Was The Direct Cause of The Injury. Beyond proving that the care you received was negligent and did not meet the accepted standard of care, you must also be able to prove that this negligent care was the direct cause of your injury or illness. Negligence alone is not enough to bring forth a successful malpractice case.
- Measurable Damages: Lastly, the damages you incurred as a direct result of negligent care must be objectively demonstrable and quantifiable. Patients must be able to quantify lost wages, increases in costs of care (medical bills, physical therapy service bills, etc) that they’ve incurred as a result of their injury or illness. Patients need to show the court the monetary value of their preventable injury or illness to prove that financial compensation is warranted. They must also show the effects of physical pain and emotional distress to convince a judge or jury that the injury is real and substantial.
Each of these factors is critical to a successful outcome. More importantly, the success of your case often lies in the strength of your legal representation. Contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney today to increase your chances of fair compensation.
Schochor, Federico and Staton bring your claim to fruition
Even with all of these factors in your favor, medical malpractice claims are challenging to litigate. The legal experts at Schochor, Federico and Staton have over three decades of experience litigating on behalf of Baltimore, Maryland and Washington D.C. victims. Call us today at 410-234-1000 to speak with one of our attorneys about your case.