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Understanding Medical Malpractice Laws

8943758_s-200x300 (1).jpgPhoto Credit: 123RF Stock Photo[/caption] Medical malpractice holds doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers liable for injuries caused by negligence.  It is important to understand that not all medical errors are considered medical malpractice. In order to prove a medical malpractice claim, the injured party must show the following:

  • the defendant had a duty to provide the appropriate medical care;
  • the defendant failed to provide the appropriate medical care; and
  • the defendant's deviation from the appropriate standard of care caused the plaintiff to sustain injuries or damages.

If you think that you or a loved one might have been the victim of medical malpractice, there are certain things you should do in order to protect your rights, including:

  • Get proper medical treatment. You should promptly get the medical attention that you need in order to prevent further exacerbation of your injuries or medical condition.
  • Retain medical records and bills. If you get a second opinion or need additional medical treatment to remedy a medical error, make sure to get complete medical reports that document the medical treatment needed to c0rrect the medical error. You should also save all medical bills.
  • Consult with a medical malpractice attorney. A medical malpractice attorney can help you understand whether you have a viable cause of action, get you the medical treatment that you need, and advise you on the next steps.

In order to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit, the injured party must file a lawsuit within the applicable statute of limitations. In Illinois, a medical malpractice lawsuit without death must be filed within two years of the date of that the patient became aware of, or should have become aware of, the medical negligence. If the patient dies, however, the wrongful death medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date of the patient's death. Medical malpractice lawsuits can take years to resolve. Before a lawsuit can even be filed, the circumstances of the case must be investigated, which can take a significant amount of time. Once the lawsuit is filed, the defendant then has the opportunity to file an answer, after which discovery will take place. Depending on the number of witnesses that are involved, discovery can sometimes take several months. Moreover, settlement negotiations may take place throughout the process which may result in delayed witness depositions during discovery. Once discovery is concluded, the case will then move on to trial if no settlement is reached. Pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit can be confusing and stressful, but a medical malpractice lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights. The Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish are committed to guiding clients through the process and fighting for maximum money damages.  Contact our office at (888) 325-7299 schedule a free consultation to discuss a possible medical malpractice claim.   Steinberg Goodman & Kalish (www.sgklawyers.com) is dedicated to protecting victims and their families.  We handle medical malpractice, product liability, personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, professional negligence, birth trauma, and railroad law matters. Contact us at (888) 325-7299 or (312) 445-9084.

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