What is Medical Malpractice?

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Many of us have heard about attention-grabbing medical malpractice cases where large settlements are awarded.

In reality, however, medical malpractice cases are particularly fact-specific and settlements largely depend on each individual case. No matter how a settlement is awarded, medical malpractice victims deserve to be compensated for their suffering and injuries.

Medical malpractice is a legal cause of action that occurs when a medical professional does not perform medical services according to the recognized standard of care. Medical malpractice cases rarely look alike, as malpractice can occur in many different ways.

To help better inform you about this important issue, let us share with you some facts about medical malpractice claims.

First, do you know how to identify if you have a potential medical malpractice claim? The most important factor to consider is whether you believe you were injured as a result of a medical professional’s deviation from his or her required standard of care. If this is the case, you may have a valid medical malpractice claim.

Florida’s Medical Malpractice Act defines the “standard of care” as a level of care and treatment that is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by reasonably prudent healthcare providers under similar circumstances. It is important to know, however, that this standard of care may be different if you are receiving emergency services. Under the Florida Good Samaritan Statute, doctors providing emergency services cannot be held liable for damages as a result of such medical care unless damages result from providing, or failing to provide, medical treatment under circumstances demonstrating a “reckless disregard” for the consequences.

Once you have met this important threshold question, it is important to know some of the basic logistics of medical malpractice claims, First, the statute of limitations for a medical malpractice claim in Florida is two years after discovering the injury, or four years from when the malpractice occurred. Further, only patients and immediate family members, such as a spouse or a child, can bring a medical malpractice lawsuit. While this information is important to know, it is imperative that you discuss the facts of your case with a local and experienced medical malpractice attorney who can help determine whether you have a valid medical malpractice claim.

These are just a few facts about medical malpractice claims. The truth is, every case is different and your specific facts will influence your case. If you, or someone you love, has been seriously injured as a result of a medical procedure, do not wait to contact us. Further, if you have specific medical malpractice related questions, we encourage you to contact us to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our experienced, local attorneys.