While we can’t predict what happens to us in the future, we can do our best to be prepared. Each year, thousands of lives are changed as the result of medical errors. If you’ve experienced injury as a result of medical negligence, you might have grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit. But how would you handle the situation and who can you turn to for help? How do you move on when life as you know it has changed so drastically?
It’s best to consult with professional medical malpractice lawyers in Canada right away. Once you have your appointment scheduled, you should prepare for the meeting using the following tips:
1. Make sure you have the right purpose
Think about why you want to take action against a healthcare provider. Determining this reason is one of the most important actions you will take during the litigation process. The reason an individual wants to sue will help dictate the nature of the litigation process, and might even go so far as to determine the eventual outcome. Medical malpractice cases should only have to do with medical negligence which results in injury.
While you won’t need to be a medical professional or an attorney to have a gut feeling about your case, the most important thing here is to avoid litigation for revenge or simply being annoyed. These types of cases will not hold up in court.
2. Are you injured?
Remember, it’s not enough that your healthcare provider annoyed you or made a simple mistake. The negligent act must have resulted in injury. Not all medical malpractice actions are necessarily cases of negligence.
To have a successful medical malpractice litigation, the plaintiff (you) need to be able to prove that the health care provider breached the standard of care (for example, a wrongful act took place); that breach in standard care directly caused injury to you; and you sustained identifiable damage.
You need to ask yourself if you have an injury which was directly caused by the action or inaction of your healthcare provider. If you think you are able to prove these things, then you are on the right course.
3. Gather as much detail as you can
At your initial consultation with your medical malpractice lawyer, you should be prepared to do a lot of talking and explaining. Your lawyer will need to know every last detail about your potential case. Legal cases need to be based on the facts, and medical malpractice lawsuits are no exception. So it’s imperative that you prepare your details and documents beforehand to make the process as smooth as possible.
This means you should make a list of healthcare providers who have treated you for the condition that is underpinning your claim. You will also need to be able to summarize the relevant medical treatment in writing, and gather all of the relevant medical correspondence and documents to bring with you to your lawyer’s office. You can also be proactive and create a list of questions for your lawyer.
4. Be honest and closely examine your damages
When you meet with your lawyer for the first time it’s imperative that you let them know about your experiences, injuries and the extent of your suffering. You should write down a list of all the injuries suffered as a result of medical error. Keep in mind that these can include both economic and non-economic damages. These can be damages sustained in the past, present and into the future.
These damages typically include the expense of any medical treatment for injuries related to the ones caused by the alleged medical negligence. Economic damage includes earnings lost due to the injury, loss of retirement benefits, even loss of earning capacities. Non-economic damages usually includes damages for any pain and suffering caused by the medical errors of the healthcare provider. Be sure to closely look over all of your damages thoroughly before meeting with your medical malpractice lawyers.
5. Documents you should prepare for your meeting
- High quality photos of your injuries, if possible
- Relevant medical bills and receipts
- Your medical records and test results
- Any letters or other correspondence from the treating hospital, healthcare provider etc.
- Any personal notes or records you made of your injuries or any relevant information connected to your condition
6. Discuss your lawyer’s payment and fees
From the outside, medical cases can seem very expensive. It’s a good thing that most medical malpractice lawyers will work on a contingency fee basis which means that you won’t owe them any money unless they actually win your case for you. Despite this, you should take the time to get to know the specifics of your lawyer’s contract. Be sure you understand every fee and expense that you will be responsible for paying. You will likely owe your attorney’s firm a percentage of your winnings and reimburse the litigation fees.
Make sure that you are confident and comfortable when you sign and hand over the paperwork.
Consult With Expert Medical Malpractice Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a healthcare provider’s negligence, you might be entitled to compensation. Medical malpractice litigations are one of the most complex legal claims and it is critical that you get the consultation of experienced attorneys who are well-versed in medical issues. At Sommers Roth & Elmaleh, we have an extensive track record of successful litigations for our clients across Canada.
If you would like to know more about medical negligence litigation, call Sommers Roth & Elmaleh at 416-961-1211 or contact us here.
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