You may be uncertain if your medical professionals made a costly error, or if they failed to take certain steps that could have improved the situation. Illinois medical malpractice law allows for you to seek compensation if you or a loved one were harmed due to the careless or negligent acts of a medical professional. This situation can be very difficult for you and your family. You may be dealing with a long road to recovery, time away from work, considerable pain, and a serious impact on your financial security. Our medical malpractice lawyers understand how to investigate your case, and if necessary, recover financial damages to help you recover.
It’s important to act without delay if you or a loved one may have suffered harm due to the malpractice of a medical professional. Your lawyer must have a significant understanding of Illinois medical malpractice law and how it will apply to your case. At Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C., our Illinois personal injury lawyers have the skill and experience to make a difference. We know what it takes to make insurance providers, healthcare professionals, and their attorneys take notice, so you obtain everything you deserve under the law.
Contact Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. to speak with an experienced lawyer about your case and options for recovery. Call (217) 528-9955 or submit the details online to set up a free, no-risk consultation, where we can review your situation, and guide your next steps.
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Understanding What Is Medical Malpractice
Medical professionals owe a high duty of care when engaged in their work. If they fail to uphold this duty, they can be found responsible for damages to those whom they injured. Medical malpractice covers those who provide medical treatment for a living. This can include doctors and nurses, as well as therapists, pharmacists, and hospital groups. A medical professional can be found liable in a malpractice claim if they treated you carelessly or maliciously. You are the victim of malpractice if you received what can be considered inadequate care that falls below the standard that one in your position should expect.
Medical malpractice can include many shortcomings:
- Surgical errors – About one in four malpractice cases involves surgeries. These can include the use of unsanitary equipment, performing the wrong surgery, or even leaving objects inside the body.
- Misdiagnosis/failure to diagnose – A doctor can be considered negligent if they fail to follow their training and notice clear warning signs of ailments. This can result in a much worse scenario that could have easily been prevented.
- Dental malpractice – A careless dentist can cause serious harm on an unsuspecting patient. Certain occurrences, such as nerve damage, can result in permanent problems.
- Birth complications/injuries – Misdiagnosing the mother or child’s condition, or performing an error in delivery, are all too common. These can result in damage to the child’s head, bones, or spinal cord.
- Medication errors – Your doctor must understand the requirements and side effects of drugs that they prescribe for your use. Powerful drugs must be dispensed of properly by pharmaceutical professionals.
- Anesthesia malpractice – Powerful doses of anesthesia must be delivered by competent professionals. Victims of anesthesia malpractice often experience permanent damage or even death.
Medical Malpractice Statistics Show A Significant Problem
A recent study by the University of Chicago found that about 40 percent of people believe that they have been subjected to some form of malpractice from a medical professional while receiving care. While many cases go unreported, it’s safe to say that a perfectly accurate picture of medical malpractice cannot be determined. Many victims of malpractice don’t have any way of knowing exactly what happened to them while in the care of medical professionals. Furthermore, many people with unnecessary complications after treatment do not seek compensation for their injuries. Informative medical malpractice statistics include:
- Approximately one percent of medical malpractice incidents result in claims – A 2013 study by Johns Hopkins found that most incidents are not followed by a claim for damages from the victims. This can also result in fewer medical professionals correcting their errors as they continue to treat patients.
- About five percent of personal injury cases are medical malpractice – In 2016 the National Center for State Courts found that medical malpractice lawsuits were a small minority of personal injury cases. This demonstrates how few lawyers will have the experience to handle a complex medical negligence claim.
- About 250,000 people die every year in the US due to medical errors – John Hopkins University found in a 2016 study that medical negligence and errors are the third largest cause of death in the United States.
How A Lawyer Can Help You Recover
Malpractice cases are always complex and generally hard fought. The details in proving negligence can become very complicated, and the insurance companies involved will not want to pay out large sums of money to injured parties. Many victims are uncertain about how to proceed. How do you prove medical malpractice, and what kind of damages can be recovered? It’s important to have a medical attorney who is knowledgeable in these cases. Our attorneys understand how stressful this can be for your family, and we are here to help you through every part of the process. While every case is different, your attorney can do the following in your case:
- Seek skilled medical help – You may need competent medical attention right away. A skilled lawyer will be able to help you find a good doctor while also pursuing your case for damages.
- Investigate the details of your injury – Medical malpractice settlements require strong cases that demonstrate where the professional failed and the significance of the damages to the victim. This means studying all relevant evidence and determining exactly what happened.
- Consulting with expert witnesses – Your case will likely require expert testimony describing the merits of your case. This is called an Affidavit of Merit, and Illinois law requires it be filed with a malpractice claim.
- Negotiating for the damages you need – The Illinois Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that there can be no cap on the damages a medical malpractice victim can recover. However, receiving the compensation you deserve requires having a skilled lawyer who can negotiate your case with the other parties involved.
- Winning at court – It’s possible that you will not receive an adequate settlement offer. Our lawyers have years of successful courtroom experience, and we know how to win damages in court if necessary.
The Medical Malpractice Statute Of Limitations
Statute of limitations rules are meant to protect defendants against unfair claims. Unfortunately, our state has a very strict statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases. This can make it difficult to pursue damages for an injury from long ago, and they make acting without delay a top priority for those harmed due to malpractice. The two time periods you must understand when considering Illinois’ medical malpractice statute of limitations are:
- Two years – You have two years from the date of injury or medical treatment to file a claim for malpractice damages. This can be extended if you could not reasonably be expected to notice your injury at first.
- Four years – Illinois statute of repose bans any medical malpractice claims after four years have passed since the injury. This includes cases where you could not notice your injury for a long time.
The Illinois statute of limitations law can make your case more complex than you initially expected. For example, if you did not notice your injury at first, then your lawyer may have to demonstrate how this failure to notice was reasonable given somebody in your condition. Do not consider two years to be a long time to think things over before calling a medical lawyer. Your case for compensation may be dependent on reviewing your medical records, speaking with witnesses and experts, and negotiating with insurance companies. This can take time, so be sure to call a capable medical malpractice law firm without delay.
A Lawyer From Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. Can Help You
It’s understandable for anyone to feel overwhelmed if they have been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of a doctor or another medical professional. Many people do not understand their options or rights for recovery. Illinois medical malpractice laws are complex and are meant to offer certain protections to doctors and hospitals who might be facing lawsuits. However, you have the right to recover damages if you or a closed loved one were injured or killed due to the careless actions of your doctor.
Do not hesitate to contact our skilled medical malpractice lawyers if you are in this position. At Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C., we’re ready to explain your situation and fight for what you need to set things right. We have worked with many victims in Illinois and can help you recover damages for things such as medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
To speak with a medical malpractice lawyer in Illinois, call (217) 528-9955 or submit a request online. We offer free initial consultations, do not charge up-front fees, and will not be paid unless you recover compensation.
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