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Medical Malpractice

A Seriousness Medical Care Problem

Medical mistakes are one of the leading causes of death in Florida.  Despite advances in medicine, people are still injured and killed by medical malpractice in record numbers.  Some studies have found that preventable medical errors cause over 400,000 deaths a year in the United States.  And Florida is one of the leading states for medical mistakes.

A Complex Series of Medical Malpractice Laws

Recovering for medical malpractice in Florida is complex and expensive.  There are specific, detailed statutes that govern how you can bring a medical malpractice case, what is required and what you can recover. There is an entire section of Florida Statutes (Fla. Stat. §766) devoted to medical malpractice.

Despite what some people may see on the news, someone cannot just go file a medical malpractice case if they have been harmed by a doctor, nurse or hospital.  There are laws in Florida that protect health care providers. These require that the injured patient do a number of things before bringing a malpractice case, even if it is crystal clear that there was a mistake that caused serious injury.

The attorney for the injured person must first obtain all the medical records for that person. This includes medical records from before the malpractice as well as after. They then have to investigate the case, evaluate the records and facts, and have a qualified expert review it and sign an affidavit under oath that there was medical malpractice and that mistake caused injury to the patient.  There must be an expert for every field of specialty that the patient claims caused or contributed to the injury.

For an expert to be qualified, they must not only be in the same field but must be in active practice and hold either a Florida medical license or an expert witness certificate issued by the Florida Board of Medicine and agree to be subject to discipline by the Board.

The attorneys for the patient may then present this to the offending health care providers and their attorneys and insurers.  At that point a 90-day presuit screen period begins.  During those 90 days there may be an exchange of information, documents and unsworn statements.  At the end of the 90 days the defendants have several options. Depending on what they do, the Plaintiff (injured party) may then file a lawsuit and begin the litigation process.

Please review our representative medical malpractice verdicts and settlements.

 

Disclaimer: The information about past verdicts and settlements of the firm’s cases are based on the unique facts of each case. These amounts reflect the gross recovery in each case (before attorneys fees, expenses and medical costs are deducted).  Although these results were obtained by our firm, they may not indicate the success or value of any other case.  By clicking on Verdicts and Settlements you are acknowledging that each case is unique and must be evaluated on its own merits. The information contained here has not been reviewed or approved by The Florida Bar.

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