As an attorney, you may be viewed as a one-stop resource for any legal-related issue by your family, friends, acquaintances, and clients. As lawyers, however, we know that the law is quite specialized. In the event you are presented with a potential medical malpractice case, you should keep in mind the following when assessing and evaluating the matter.
Medical malpractice cases are complex. You are required to not only understand the legal requirements, but also the case-specific medicine, when you are evaluating a potential claim of medical malpractice.
You will need expert witnesses. When it comes to proving a medical malpractice case, you must have supportive medical expert opinion and testimony, often from multiple medical experts.
There are strict time limitations. In addition to the statute of limitations, certain jurisdictions also impose a statute of repose in medical malpractice cases which means you can only include negligent actions or inactions going back a finite period of time. If the negligence occurred further back than the limitation, the case is time-barred.
Jurisdictional specific requirements. In medical malpractice cases, there are often state-specific requirements related to notice, filing, and initial evidentiary matters in order to prosecute a medical malpractice case. You must become familiar with these requirements to avoid a negative outcome based on a technicality.
Costs to pursue a medical malpractice suit are high. Medical malpractice cases require extensive time, effort, and resources. Since attorney compensation is generally based on a successful outcome, you or your firm will upfront considerable expense over an extended period (often 3-5 years) in order to evaluate and prosecute a case. Consultation with and obtaining testimony from your medical experts throughout the case is, in and of itself, costly.
Medical malpractice is a highly specialized area of law with unique requirements. As a firm dedicated to this specialized area, Thomas & Wickenheiser has spent years building a strong network of medical experts and is set up to effectively manage the long and complex litigation journey. If you have a potential medical malpractice claim and are not equipped or do not have the inclination to investigate and prosecute the matter, consider referring it to a qualified firm such as Thomas & Wickenheiser. We accept referrals.