Medical professionals provide one of the essential services for a human being. Consequently, they undergo rigorous training that often takes more than six years to complete. At the end of the training, they take an oath called The Hippocratic Oath in which they swear to do everything in their powers to protect life. While most health care professionals endeavor to do just that, others make mistakes that lead to either death or disability. Here is what you need to know about how to sue for medical negligence.
First, you need to know if negligence occurred. You can do this by reading as much as possible about what you were suffering from and find out what are the recommended procedures for handling such a case are. Gather as many documents as possible that relate to what was done to you or the patient. These documents include laboratory reports and x-ray pictures most of which are usually in the possession of patient. Request for any other documents available from the hospital without necessarily informing them of your intentions to sue; they might be reluctant to give them to you. These papers will form the foundation of your case.
Since you are not an expert, seek the opinion of an independent doctor who will confirm to you if negligence did occur. Armed with this information, seek the services of a medical negligence lawyer. The legal practice is broad; select a lawyer who specializes in medical negligence compensation. Furthermore, choose one who is well experienced in this area of law; the more experience they have, the higher your chances of winning the case.
Most medical negligence solicitors have their team of doctors whom they consult on medical issues. They will look at your papers and advice you on the legal options at your disposal. A good attorney will honestly tell you about your chances of winning the case as well as how much is likely to be paid as compensation.
If they take your case, no win no fee solicitors who specialize in medical negligence will help you collect more documents. They will also draft a letter to inform the doctor or hospital of your intent to sue. Solicitors are required by law to maintain confidentiality; consequently, you should give them all information you know for them to help you.
After hiring a solicitor, it is important to only talk to the hospital through them. If the hospital prefers an off-the-court compensation agreement, your lawyer will guide you through it. Also, follow everything your lawyer tells you about the case; you are now a team.
Remember, you are not the only person who benefits if you win medical negligence cases; you help to weed out negligent medical practitioners. This way, they will not hurt anyone else. It is important that you pursue the case as early as possible; most countries give a time limit for you to sue. For example, in the UK, the time limit is about three years; after which it becomes difficult to sue, and even if you win the case, the compensation amount is considerably lower.