While most medical professionals are competent and trustworthy with the care they provide, there are some who recklessly ignore standard practices, carelessly fail to follow up on medical procedures, or simply make a mistake that should not be expected of someone within their field. Whatever the source of a medical error is, the end result could be additional medical expenses, significantly worse physical conditions, and potentially fatal complications.
Mistakes by healthcare providers can serve as grounds for civil litigation, but the uniquely complex nature of these types of claims makes seeking help from a seasoned personal injury attorney especially important. A qualified and compassionate Midland medical malpractice lawyer could help at every stage of this process.
Unique Requirements for Malpractice Claims
There are numerous rules and regulations for medical malpractice claims that do not apply to other types of personal injury cases. First and foremost, Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code §74.051 requires that prospective malpractice claimants send written notice to prospective defendants of their intent to sue no later than 60 days prior to actually doing so. This notice must be accompanied by a form authorizing the “release of protected health information” for the benefit of providers who wish to open investigations of their own into alleged malpractice.
Additionally, all medical malpractice lawsuits must have at least one expert report in which a qualified professional in the same field as the defendant affirms that the defendant violated the standard of care for that particular field and directly caused the claimant’s compensable damages as a result. As per Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code §74.351, plaintiffs must submit their expert report(s) no later than 120 days after filing their malpractice claim.
Finally, Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code §74.251 prohibits most prospective plaintiffs from filing suit for malpractice more than two years after discovering their injuries or more than 10 years after the injury actually occurred. A Midland attorney could provide crucial assistance navigating around these potential legal roadblocks and constructing a strong medical malpractice claim.
Damage Caps for Non-Economic Losses
Perhaps one of the most important restrictions on recovery for medical malpractice is the cap on non-economic damages set by Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code §74.301. Under this statute, recovery for subjective losses like pain and suffering is limited to $250,000 in cases naming a single physician or healthcare provider as defendant.
If a case names more than one individual or institution as a defendant, the maximum amount the claimant could seek in non-economic damages is $500,000, and no individual defendant may be held liable for more than $250,000 in non-economic losses. A medical negligence lawyer in Midland could explain these caps in greater detail and discuss what damages may be recoverable in a particular situation.
Seek Help from a Midland Medical Malpractice Attorney
Suffering a negative outcome from medical treatment does not always justify litigation, and the host of additional rules for this kind of case ensure that people do not pursue frivolous claims. If actionable negligence by a healthcare provider caused you serious harm, though, pursuing a malpractice lawsuit against them could be key to preserving your future.
A qualified Midland medical malpractice lawyer could provide the help you need to effectively seek the compensation you need. Call today to set up a consultation.