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Medical malpractice is an unfortunate reality in the United States, listed as one of the leading causes of accidental injuries and deaths recorded in the country each year. Many residents of North Florida and Northeast Florida rely on various medical providers to administer safe and effective treatment for their illnesses and injuries every day, but many of these providers cause devastating injuries through negligence and failure to meet their patients’ standards of care.
Spohrer Dodd offers compassionate legal counsel to victims of medical malpractice in Lake City and surrounding communities. We have helped many past clients navigate incredibly complex cases and reach satisfactory results in their recovery efforts. If you or a loved one was harmed by the negligence of a doctor, nurse, or any other health care professional, a Lake City medical malpractice attorney can give you the comprehensive legal representation you need to recover as fully as possible from the experience.
The term “medical malpractice” refers to any failure of a medical practitioner to meet their patient’s standard of care. The professional medical community uses the most recent medical research to inform their accepted practices in treating known illnesses and injuries. The standard of care is the level of treatment a patient requires for their diagnosis. For example, if a patient displays symptoms of a specific medical condition, their attending medical team must adhere to the standard of care approved for that condition.
Medical professionals may only deviate from their patients’ standards of care with good reason. For example, if a patient’s condition typically requires a specific type of medication but the patient has an allergy to the medication, their attending physician may deviate from the standard of care in good faith to explore potentially effective alternative remedies.
Medical malpractice can also occur through gross negligence or criminal misconduct. For example, if a surgeon attempts to complete a procedure while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and harms a patient, they are likely to face not only civil liability for malpractice but also criminal charges and loss of their medical license. A few of the most commonly reported examples of medical malpractice in Lake City and surrounding communities are:
Your Lake City medical malpractice attorney will be instrumental in proving that your recent injury resulted from a defendant’s failure to meet your standard of care. Florida law requires a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case to prove that their client suffered harm from medical negligence with an affidavit of merit from an appropriately skilled medical professional. Additionally, advance notice of the claim must be sent to the client at least 90 days before the actual filing of the claim.
An experienced Lake City medical malpractice attorney can help their client recover full compensation for the damages their client suffered from malpractice. After proving the defendant and plaintiff had a formal doctor-patient relationship and the defendant is fully responsible for the malpractice in question, the plaintiff is permitted to seek compensation for:
When you have experienced legal counsel assisting you with your medical malpractice claim, you could potentially recover substantial compensation from the defendant who injured you. However, depending on the nature and severity of your injury, it’s possible for liability to fall on a specific medical professional, or their employer may share liability for your damages. If vicarious liability of this nature or any criminal malfeasance played a role in your injury, your Lake City medical malpractice attorney can advise you as to how this could influence your recovery.
Spohrer Dodd always takes a client-focused approach to legal representation in the medical malpractice claims we accept. Our firm has years of experience handling these cases in North Florida and knows the challenges that Lake City plaintiffs are likely to face as they seek accountability for the harm they suffered. The sooner you secure reliable legal counsel to guide you through your case, the more likely you are to reach the best possible outcome.
A: Injuries from diagnostic errors top the list of most common forms of medical malpractice reported throughout the country. Misdiagnosis, or failure to accurately diagnose a patient, is the most common diagnostic error that can lead to a malpractice claim. Delayed diagnosis and failure to diagnose are also possible causes of malpractice claims that can entail extensive plaintiff damages.
A: Proving fault for medical malpractice is more difficult than proving liability for other personal injuries. Under state law, you must demonstrate that the physician you injured you did so because they failed to provide the level of care your situation required. To firmly establish this in a civil case, the plaintiff must obtain a signed affidavit of merit from a qualified medical professional who holds similar credentials to the defendant. They must testify as to how the defendant failed to meet your standard of care.
A: It’s possible for the plaintiff in a medical malpractice case to recover the full amount of economic damages they suffered because of the defendant’s actions, and due to a recent state Supreme Court ruling on non-economic damages in medical malpractice claims, limits on pain and suffering compensation no longer apply. However, many factors can influence the total value of your medical malpractice claim, and an experienced Lake City medical malpractice attorney is the best resource to consult for an accurate estimate of your claim’s total potential value.
A: It’s natural to be hesitant about the potential cost of legal representation for any civil case. Before accepting any attorney’s representation, it is vital to fully understand their billing policy. Most attorneys accepting personal injury clients do so on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only collect legal fees when they win their cases. State law limits contingency fees with these billing arrangements, and plaintiffs are only required to pay their fees if their attorneys win their cases. Verify a prospective attorney’s billing policy before signing a contract for their representation.
A: Florida’s statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases is two years, and this time limit begins on the date that malpractice occurs. However, some injuries from medical malpractice are not immediately recognizable. Therefore, if your symptoms do not manifest for some time after you received negligent medical care, the statute of limitations would begin when you discover the harm done to you by the medical professional in question.
Spohrer Dodd offers compassionate and comprehensive legal representation to clients who have been injured by medical malpractice in Lake City and surrounding areas. Our firm will take the time necessary to get to know you and the details of your experience to ensure we provide fully individualized legal counsel through every stage of your proceedings. We know that any medical malpractice injury can be life-changing, and you are likely to have many pressing legal questions in the aftermath of your experience. Contact our team today and schedule a free consultation with a Lake City medical malpractice attorney to get the answers you need.