When a health care provider makes a mistake, the ramifications can be catastrophic for patients and their families. Often, these mistakes were entirely preventable, but due to the negligence and carelessness of those who were supposed to be treating you, you are forced to suffer. The good news is that if you or a loved one has suffered harm due to the malpractice of a medical professional, you may have a right to sue for compensation.
Medical malpractice occurs when a patient suffers harm due to a health care provider’s inattentiveness or failure to follow a standard level of care. Doctors, surgeons, nurses, and other individual health care providers can be found guilty of medical malpractice but so can the institutions they work for like hospitals and clinics.
In order to understand medical malpractice, it’s important to know that in every medical situation, there is a standard of treatment that must be met by health care providers. When that standard is not met and a patient suffers because of it, the patient can bring a medical malpractice claim. Many such cases occur in the operating room. However, medical malpractice can also occur at the diagnostic level of care: misinterpreting CT scans or x-rays, for example. Pharmacists, dentists, oral surgeons, anesthesiologists, obstetricians, nurses, psychiatrists, and other types of medical professionals can likewise be found liable for malpractice in their respective fields.
When a patient suffers injury or death during or after medical treatment, a patient (or their family) can inquire whether a substandard level of care was provided. If medical malpractice liability is found, the patient or their family may recover compensation for their injuries (including wrongful death) and economic and non-economic losses. Deciding whether to pursue a legal remedy after a negative medical outcome can be difficult. The physical and emotional tolls of a serious medical condition are always considered, and when you add to this the weight of a serious legal case, the effect can be overwhelming. Fortunately, getting help from an experienced and understanding attorney can help.
Medical malpractice can happen at virtually any stage of medical care. Common instances of medical malpractice include:
Medical malpractice is not uncommon in the United States today. In fact, according to John Hopkins University, it was the third leading cause of death in the United States in 2016. Unfortunately, Michigan has a large share of such malpractice. Here’s what you need to know about medical malpractice in Michigan.
First, keep in mind that not all negative medical outcomes are caused by malpractice. If you suspect negligence may have been the reason for suffering you endured during a medical procedure or diagnosis, you and your lawyer must prove this. Only by bringing forward the proper evidence to establish the elements of your claim entitles you to receive compensation.
According to Michigan law, there four things that must be proven to have a viable medical malpractice case:
As stated above, there are many examples of medical malpractice that may justify bringing a lawsuit and seeking compensation. Generally speaking, most medical malpractice cases will likely fall into one of the following three categories:
Failure to properly diagnose a medical condition
There are serious consequences when a condition goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. In many cases — with many cancers, for example — prompt and accurate diagnosis can save lives. If a health care provider misses an obvious diagnosis or does not diagnose a condition that other providers are later able to pinpoint, this could be the basis for a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Failure to warn the patient of known risks
When a health care provider has recommended a certain treatment or surgery for a patient, they must also tell that patient of all known risks associated with the treatment or surgery. If a provider fails to do this and a patient suffers such harm due to the treatment or surgery, the provider can be liable because the patient may well have declined the procedure or care had they known the risks ahead of time.
Improper or poor treatment
There are two possible scenarios here. First, a medical professional may deliver the proper treatment but may do so in a poor or negligent way (that fails to meet the requisite standard of care). Next, a medical professional may not deliver the proper treatment, instead choosing to ignore a serious issue altogether or to follow a course of action that no medical professional operating within the requisite standard of care would choose.
Yes, you can sue a hospital, medical office, or individual provider for medical negligence. Doing so, however, is a significant undertaking. There are complicated and confusing legal steps that must be followed to move forward with a medical malpractice case. Having experienced and trusted attorneys on your side is crucial.
If you or a loved one has suffered due to a medical professional’s negligence, Giroux Trial Attorneys, P.C. wants to help you receive just compensation for your injuries and damages. We are a nationally recognized law firm specializing in providing aggressive representation for clients who have suffered from medical malpractice.
A statute of limitations is a law regarding how long a plaintiff (the harmed patient in this case) has to initiate a claim against an accused party. In the case of medical malpractice claims in the State of Michigan, the statute of limitations is two years (with certain nuanced and limited exceptions). This means that you typically have two years from the date of your medical service (your diagnosis, surgery, or treatment, etc.) from which to file your medical malpractice claim.
Other personal injury (also known as tort) cases have different statutes of limitations, so it’s important not to confuse them. For example, non-medical negligence cases typically require a claim to be filed within three-years of the injury.
In light of this, the sooner you take action, the better. Gathering documents, receipts, lab reports, and other data takes time, and all of this legwork will be required in order to prepare your case. Moreover, eyewitness accounts may be essential to your case, but the longer you wait to contact individuals regarding their recollections, the more likely it is that their memories will fade or they will be unavailable. If you wait too long to contact legal counsel, you may unintentionally miss the deadline for filing and you will be unable to file your lawsuit — no matter how clear the liability is.
At Giroux Trial Attorneys, we prosecute all types of Michigan medical malpractice claims. Whether your claim is against a surgeon, doctor, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, registered nurse, midwife, or another medical or health care provider, we will investigate your case and provide you with the best legal options available to you.
If you live in Michigan, contact Giroux Trial Attorneys today to learn more about our professional litigation services and the legal options available for your case.
Look for an attorney that has these two important qualifications regarding Medical Malpractice cases:
Many lawyers are afraid of taking on a big hospital or a big corporate entity. We’ve tried or handled cases against some of the largest hospitals in Michigan.
You need a lawyer who can represent you aggressively and address the medical issues in your case.
To get to the facts your attorney needs experience digging into medical files and understanding the medical language.
The attorneys and Giroux Trial Attorneys are available to evaluate your case and help you understand the merits of your case and how they fit into the current complex laws in Michigan.
Speak with one of our representatives, or complete the case assessment form below, so we can learn more about your situation.
Our team will thoroughly review your case, and provide more information on the strength of your case.
We will fight your case, and do everything we can to win, even if we need to take the case to trial, because that’s why we believe in Pure Law.
You can only file a medical malpractice claim on behalf of someone other than yourself if one of the following exceptions applies: wrongful death cases, an incapacitated plaintiff, a minor plaintiff, or a class action case.
Your personal injury attorney will better advise you of what medical records to ask for specifically, but as a general rule, you should ask for any and all medical records available.
For adults, two years from the date of the medical malpractice or six months from the date of discovery. For minors eight years of age or older, two years. For minors under eight years of age, a claim may be filed up until the minor’s tenth birthday.
Medical malpractice is negligence by a healthcare professional or provider where the treatment provided was substandard and resulted in harm, injury, or death. A violation of the standard of care is medical malpractice.
The standard of care in healthcare is generally defined as the level and type of care that a reasonably competent and skilled healthcare professional, with a similar educational and training background, and in the same medical community, would have provided under the circumstances that led to the malpractice.
Michigan has placed low and high cap limits on medical malpractice awards. The low cap limit is $445,500 and applies to any medical malpractice claim outside the high cap exception. The high cap exceptions are (1) sterility; (2) paralysis; and (3) brain injury. The high cap is $795,500.
Michigan Lawyers Weekly honors Robert Giroux as a “Go-To Lawyer” for Medical Malpractice Cases. Michigan Lawyers Weekly has announced its first-ever class...
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