If you believe your doctor or other health care provider has done something wrong, you should get an independent medical opinion from another doctor. It is crucial that you get proper treatment of your underlying medical condition, including treatment to correct the problems caused by the provider’s negligence.
As soon as possible after you have secured proper treatment, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney. There are many reasons why you should call a Syracuse medical malpractice lawyer as soon as you can after a medical error.
A lawyer can help you:
- File a claim for damages within the statute of limitations. You have only a limited amount of time in which to file a claim for medical malpractice. The statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims in New York is 2 ½ years in most cases.
- Preserve and protect evidence. It is not inconceivable that doctors who know they have done something wrong may try to hide the evidence by changing or destroying medical records or otherwise taking steps to cover up what they did. The sooner you get a lawyer and begin the process of making a claim, the sooner you can secure the evidence you need and ensure that no crucial information is lost.
- Obtain medical records and other information from the doctor or hospital. Much of the information you will need to prove medical malpractice comes from the medical records kept by your health care provider. The provider may not be willing to turn that information over to you so you can build a case for malpractice. A Syracuse medical malpractice lawyer, however, can use the courts to obtain the information you need.
- Find an independent expert medical professional. You will most likely need the assistance of a medical expert to sort out what happened to you and who was to blame. Some doctors, especially in small communities, may be reluctant to testify against their colleagues or unwilling to provide information that shows another doctor did something wrong. This means you need to find an independent medical professional who is willing to review the care you received and who is willing to explain — in easy-to-understand terms — how that violated the standard of care.
It is important to contact a New York medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible. Any delay could result in evidence being lost and could make it harder to make your case.
Other Steps to Take After a Medical Mistake
After you’ve contacted a lawyer and gotten medical help to treat or correct the health problems you are facing, you will have a few options on how to proceed. Your attorney can explain to you what comes next.
One option you have is to pursue a settlement. A settlement is an out-of-court resolution of your claims. Usually, you will be negotiating with the malpractice insurance company that represents the doctor or other medical provider who caused your injury. Since the insurance company pays the claim, the insurance company’s representatives will handle negotiations. The insurer will most likely have an adjuster, lawyer and expert participating in these negotiations.
A Syracuse malpractice lawyer can advise you about whether to settle and whether any settlement offer you receive is a fair one. At the Law Offices of Scott C. Gottlieb & Associates, LLP, our attorneys can negotiate on your behalf to help you obtain a settlement that covers your medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, emotional distress and other losses.
If you are unable to reach a full and fair settlement through negotiations, your next option is to file a civil lawsuit. You will have the burden of proving your case, which means showing the health care provider was unreasonably careless in a way that directly led to your being harmed. A Syracuse medical malpractice attorney can help you build and present a case to the judge or jury to help you get the compensation you deserve. Your attorney can also make sure that you comply with the statute of limitations (time limit for filing a claim), as well as with all court deadlines and requirements.
Getting Legal Help After a Medical Error
At the Law Offices of Scott C. Gottlieb & Associates, LLP, our Syracuse medical malpractice lawyers offer free consultations to patients who believe they were victims of medical malpractice. Contact us now to schedule your consultation and to take the first step toward getting justice for the medical error that harmed you.
The Law Offices of Scott C. Gottlieb & Associates, LLP, in Syracuse, is here to help if you have been hurt. Call us at (315) 314-5390 or fill out our online contact form. All calls and inquiries receive a response within the same day, usually within an hour. There is no case-review cost when you call.