How Do I File a Medical Malpractice Claim?
While medical negligence or personal injury claims are now well-known parts of the lexicon in the UK, a great deal of confusion remains around medical malpractice.
While many of these terms are often used interchangeably, of course, there’s a significant difference between medical negligence and malpractice. While the former refers to individual and accidental errors made by healthcare professionals, for example, the latter is graver and covers a more reckless and deliberate failure to uphold standards of care.
But how do you file a medical malpractice claim? Here are some steps to keep in mind at all times:
1. Contact a Medical Malpractice Solicitor
If you’ve suffered harm at the hands of a medical professional, your first step should always be to contact a specialist medical malpractice solicitor.
This will help you determine whether you have a viable claim or not, as your legal service provider can confirm whether you can provide evidence of recklessness and malpractice and how this has impacted your physical or mental wellbeing.
If not, you may be informed that your claim has more in common with medical negligence, or that you’ll be unable to successfully push for any kind of compensation at all.
2. Gather Records, Evidence, and Documentation
If it’s determined that you do have a claim, your solicitor will contact the medical practitioner or professional involved on your behalf and set the wheels in motion.
They’ll also look to gather evidence and documentation from both parties involved, including copies of your medical records and proof of your ailments after a medical intervention.
The purpose of this is to gradually build your case, in a bid to demonstrate the nature of the error and the failure to uphold a duty of care and simultaneously link this to your subsequent health issues.
They’ll also gather evidence that proves the claim is being made within three years of the incident or the date that your injuries became apparent.
3. Use a Claims Calculator
While most cases of medical negligence are settled out of court, malpractice claims tend to be graver in nature and may end up being much higher profile in nature.
While such cases may be more complex and time-consuming, they can also trigger higher compensation payouts and force healthcare providers to publicly accept liability for your injuries.
Your solicitor can also help you to manage expectations with regard to the time frame of your case and your most likely compensation payment.
You can also use an online claims calculator to estimate precisely how much you can expect to be awarded in relation to your claim. This is a rough estimate, of course, while you may have to accept a smaller, out-of-court settlement to help resolve the case quickly and ease your emotional burden.