More and more often, we read stories in the news about the need to reign in medical malpractice lawsuits. But, do you know what medical malpractice is and how it affects you?
Medical malpractice is a legal term that refers to the negligence or misconduct of a health care provider that causes you (their patient) harm or injury. Medical malpractice can occur in various situations, such as misdiagnosis, medication errors, surgical errors, birth injuries, anesthesia errors and more.
New York law
Medical malpractice is not only a serious health issue but also a legal one. According to New York law, victims of medical malpractice have the right to seek compensation for their damages, such as medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and more. However, pursuing a medical malpractice claim is not easy. There are strict deadlines, complex procedures and high standards of proof that must be met.
Statute of limitations
One of the most important aspects of a medical malpractice claim is the statute of limitations. This refers to the time limit within which you must file your lawsuit or lose your right to do so. In New York, generally, you must file your claim within two years and six months from the date of the malpractice or the last treatment for the same condition.
However, there are some exceptions and variations to this rule depending on the circumstances of your case. For example, if you discover a foreign object left inside your body after surgery, you have one year from the date of discovery or the date when you should have discovered it to file your claim.
Standard of care
Another important aspect of a medical malpractice claim is the standard of care. This is the level of skill and care that a reasonably competent health care provider in the same field and locality provides under similar circumstances. To prove that your health care provider breached this standard of care and caused your injury, you will need expert testimony from a qualified medical professional who can explain what went wrong and how it could have been prevented.
Medical malpractice claims are often contested by the defendants and their insurance companies who may try to deny liability, minimize damages or blame you. It is crucial to have strong evidence to support your claim, such as medical records, witness statements, photographs and more. If you or a loved one has been harmed by medical malpractice in New York, do not hesitate to hold the negligent parties accountable.