Hospitals exist as a safe haven and place of healing for those who are hurting and in need of quality care. When you enter a hospital or urgent care center, the staff have an obligatory duty to deliver care that will improve your health. Still, in some instances, patients leave in worse conditions or succumb to their injuries due to negligent medical care.
If this has been the experience of someone that you know or your personal experience, your case can be handled by the medical malpractice attorneys serving York County, Virginia, from the Pendleton Law Team.
Our legal team provides a thorough, in-depth analysis of your case, weighs the value of your claim, and gives comprehensive support to help you navigate the legal options you choose to pursue. To learn more about the basics of a medical malpractice suit, keep reading or get in touch with one of our personal injury trial lawyers who can handle your case.
Defining the Scope of Medical Malpractice
In the medical field, the term “standard of care” refers to the criteria that a reasonably competent medical professional would use to treat a patient. In medical malpractice cases, a healthcare professional is accused of deviating from their obligatory duty and instead acting with negligence, disregard, or misconduct, as shown in the following circumstances:
- Surgery mistakes
- Misdiagnosing or failing to diagnose at all
- Failing to treat a condition
- Lack of informed consent from a patient
- Medical mistakes
- Post-treatment errors
Unfortunately, medical malpractice claims are common and complex. The most difficult challenge is demonstrating the medical standard of care in your specific situation. However, with the guidance of our medical malpractice lawyer, determining how your medical provider failed to take appropriate action can be a simplified and expedited process.
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Bringing a Medical Malpractice Suit Forward in Virginia
Should you choose to bring a medical malpractice suit forward in Nevada, you should know that medical malpractice cases are capped. Costs like hospital stays, prescription fees, lost income, diminished future wages, and other incident-related expenses can be recovered within a certain limit.
According to Virginia law, a plaintiff’s recovery for damages in a medical negligence case is limited to a certain sum. Virginia will have a cap on malpractice damages in 2023 of roughly $2.5 million. However, because the damage cap automatically rises every year, it will reach $3 million by 2030.
Compared to other states, Virginia’s statutory cap on medical malpractice damages is exceptionally severe because it is an all-encompassing cap covering all types or categories of damages. The cap in Virginia covers all types of damages, including financial and emotional distress. This means the maximum award a malpractice plaintiff can receive in Virginia is $2.5 million.
The majority of malpractice cases are settled out of court. However, depending on the circumstances, it may be worthwhile to litigate. Insurance payouts rise when claims progress through the court system. Even more so, having a medical malpractice lawyer represent you in your York County medical negligence dispute will greatly improve your chances of getting a favorable verdict.
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The Standard Timeline for a Medical Malpractice Case
If you decide to follow through and open a case for medical negligence, understand that this may be a drawn-out process, but our personal injury lawyers will be here at every step. The following stages are standard for a malpractice claim:
- Lawyer’s consultation session: This is where you gain insight into the law that can assist your lawsuit filing.
- Investigation begins: A procedural investigation will be initiated to look into any pertinent medical bills and medical history of the victim.
- Seeking an expert’s opinion: We will employ a medical specialist to help prove your case and establish a causal connection between the injuries and negligence. To confirm the accuracy of your claim, you must get their certificate of merit.
- Discovery: The plaintiff and the defendant are both asked for information during the discovery stage, which will be used throughout the litigation. Depositions will involve questioning, during which both sides will defend their viewpoints.
- Negotiation stage: Both parties will start drafting a compensation offer as part of the settlement negotiations. If an agreement cannot be reached, the process will proceed to the next stage.
- Trial: A judge and jury will hear two arguments before making a decision. There will be cross-examination of witnesses and testimony from both sides. From here, the jury will determine how much a defendant must compensate the plaintiff.
Each timeline for a medical malpractice claim can vary, but with the assistance of a legal team, your case will be processed smoothly by professionals that will update you at every turn.
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Who Is Held Liable in a York County Medical Negligence Claim?
Assigning liability to the appropriate person begins with an investigation. Upon thoroughly reviewing the facts of the medical negligence claim, a determination is made to hold any of the following parties responsible:
- Physicians, including general practitioners, specialists, and surgeons
- The nurses
- Physician assistants
- Physical or occupational therapists
- Medical laboratory directors and technicians
- Dentists and hygienists
- Hospitals, clinics, or surgery centers
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Components That Could Impact Your Ability to File a Claim
There are some factors that could easily impact your ability to file a claim or collect a settlement. Typically, shared fault in Virginia is the main reason why a claim would be invalidated, but other reasons include:
By signing a consent form, you may not qualify to sue for medical malpractice if:
- You were not under the effect of strong painkillers or mentally unable to consent when you signed it.
- You gave consent willingly, or no one compelled you to sign the form
- The waiver lists the dangers of the medical operation and drugs involved
Your injuries, however, may not always be covered by consent forms. Alternatively, the doctor may not have sufficiently explained all the hazards. Despite a responsibility release, our medical negligence attorney can evaluate all alternatives in your York lawsuit.
Statute of Limitations
In Virginia, there is a deadline for bringing a malpractice claim against a healthcare professional. According to Virginia Code 8.01-243.1, victims have two years from the date of their injuries to submit a claim. Under most circumstances, you will no longer be entitled to compensation after this date has passed. If there are any exceptions, they will be discussed during your consultation.
For the purpose of evidence preservation, it is always in your best interest to file a claim as soon as possible. We understand how medical mishaps may have impacted your ability to meet with a personal injury attorney sooner. We will do our best to file your claim quickly while ensuring that all legal documentation is complete and accurate.
Don’t Face a Negligent Hospital Alone
It might be challenging to request reimbursement from medical practitioners or the healthcare industry in general. Our York-serving medical malpractice lawyers are adept at being “Heavy Hitters®,” pressing for fair settlements, and guiding our clients through the difficulties of malpractice claims. Contact the Pendleton Law Team today for reputable legal counsel.
We are a highly-rated medical malpractice law firm in Virginia that will advocate for your case because of our dedication, knowledge, and compassion. Virginians put their faith in Christina Pendleton & Associates to pursue justice and prosecute offenders. Best of all, our initial consultation is free of charge, and if we can’t win you a settlement, you won’t pay a thing.
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