Experiencing an injury or worsening of health in a doctor’s or surgeon’s care is devastating. It can change the entire trajectory of your life. You go to your doctor to help ease a health issue but leave with a worse one.
While you can typically trust your medical team, sometimes errors happen. A Long Beach personal injury lawyer can fight for your fair compensation if a medical or surgical error has interrupted your life. A medical malpractice lawyer in Long Beach can help you through this journey.
Qualifications for Medical Practice Lawsuit
If you feel a doctor’s negligence caused you harm, does it automatically make a case for malpractice? There are specific legal criteria a claim must meet. You will need to prove:
- You had a relationship with the provider, so they owed you a duty of care. For example, you were the doctor’s patient.
- The care you received failed to meet accepted medical standards and protocol. For example, what the doctor did, most reasonable doctors would not do.
- The care directly led to actual harm, whether physical injury, financial costs, emotional distress, etc. There must be real damages with evidence showing the provider’s breach caused them.
- The damages can be calculated reasonably. Medical bills, lost wages, and pain/suffering amounts will all need to be listed.
You must know how to present each point to prove your side of the case. Going up against a doctor or medical professional can make it harder to win your case. The process can be easier with an experienced malpractice attorney in Long Beach on your side.
For a free legal consultation with a medical malpractice lawyer serving Long Beach, call (310) 896-2723
The Most Common Reasons for Medical Malpractice
While a doctor, surgeon, or medical professional is someone we should trust with our care, they can make mistakes. Some mistakes are human error, while others are plain negligence. Some mistakes can be life-altering.
Providing an incorrect diagnosis by failing to order the proper tests or misinterpreting test results can have disastrous consequences. For example, misdiagnosing early-stage cancer symptoms as benign may prevent you from receiving timely treatment while the disease progresses. According to Fierce Healthcare, one in three misdiagnoses can result in serious injury or death.
Even if doctors eventually identify the correct condition, harm may already occur because of the delay. For instance, not recognizing subtle early warning signs of heart disease could result in permanent heart damage if a heart attack happens before diagnosis.
This mistake can be wrongly dosing, not monitoring you, or not assessing health risks before surgery. Anesthesia errors frequently result in hypoxic brain damage, organ damage, paralysis, or even death.
Delivering a baby has risks by itself, but harmful errors by doctors and nurses can lead to painful childbirth injuries. Newborns may sustain injuries like fractured bones, cerebral palsy because of oxygen deprivation, and brachial plexus injuries during forceful deliveries.
Long Beach Medical Malpractice Lawyer Near Me (310) 896-2723
How to Provide Proof with a Long Beach Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Evidence is a huge factor in your case. The insurance company and medical office can fight diligently; you must be prepared. Some of the proof you should have is:
- Medical records from before, during, and after the incident of malpractice.
- Bills, receipts, and statements related to additional costs from the malpractice.
- Photos or video documenting the injury when possible.
- Statements from eyewitnesses like nurses or family members present.
- Testimony from independent medical experts who can review if care meets professional standards.
Without this proof, it can be harder to hold a strong case. It may seem daunting to gather all of this evidence. Thankfully, with a lawyer on your side, it can be easier.
Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice
In California, you have a limited time frame to take action in a medical malpractice case. The statute of limitations has strict deadlines. In most cases, you can file a malpractice lawsuit within three years of the injury or one year after discovering the injury, whichever occurs first.
There are exceptions to the statutes. Minors in California have until age 8 to file, or three years from discovering the malpractice, up to age 26. Other exceptions include fraud, intentional concealment, or a foreign object left in the body after surgery.
Since the statutes vary with age, it is best to work with a lawyer to determine the exact timeline based on your circumstances. For example, if your statutory period has ended, your attorney may be able to still help. They may find grounds to create exceptions if you can prove negligence.
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Types of Compensation for Medical Malpractice
You may receive compensation for economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages involve the financial side. Some examples of economic damage include:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of future income
- Possible punitive damages
- Potential in-home nursing care
Non-economic damages compensate for issues like pain, suffering, and reduced quality of life. Calculating these losses is challenging, but juries award amounts they deem fair. A medical malpractice attorney in Long Beach can help you choose the best type of compensation to move forward with for your specific case.
Types of Long-Term Injuries from Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice can cause permanent negative issues for the rest of your life. It can completely change the trajectory of your life. There are many different types of injuries that happen as a result of medical negligence.
Common lifelong effects include:
- Permanent loss of mobility or function after surgical nerve damage. This could lead to in-home care, which is costly.
- Cognitive disabilities from anesthesia errors or oxygen deprivation during birth. This requires special education and care.
- Chronic pain syndromes from surgical mistakes. These often require long-term pain management.
- Severe depression or PTSD following traumatic experiences like childbirth injuries. Extensive counseling may be needed.
- Amputated limbs because of surgical negligence. Prosthetics and therapy allow adaptation.
- Disfigurement from mistakes during procedures. Multiple reconstructive surgeries may follow.
- Inability to conceive or bear children because of reproductive health errors. This causes great emotional distress.
- Paralysis after spinal cord trauma from poor technique. Wheelchairs and home modifications become necessary.
The financial impacts can add up significantly for these types of injuries. The lost wages, medical bills, and any care expenses can accumulate quickly. No amount of money can make up for your injuries, but it is important to keep medical professionals accountable.
You Deserve Justice After Medical Malpractice
If you have injuries from a medical or surgical error, a Long Beach medical malpractice attorney is essential to fight for your rights to fair compensation. We know how to build a strong case demonstrating that substandard medical care caused you devastating harm. This is not a small matter to overlook; malpractice can detrimentally impact your health, finances, family, and future.
Our legal team is here to help you hold negligent providers accountable and recover damages to cover your immense losses. Contact us for a free consultation so we can start with a strategy to prove your case and maximize your compensation. With an experienced attorney on your side, you can pursue justice and start rebuilding your life after medical trauma.