What Is A Medical Malpractice Claim Under Florida State Law?
A medical malpractice claim is a claim against a medical provider who falls beneath the acceptable standard of care and injures a patient.
Are Malpractice Claims Only Brought Against Medical Doctors Or Against Other Healthcare Professionals As Well?
Medical malpractice claims can be against medical doctors, hospitals, nurses, or entities controlled by a hospital, such as emergency rooms or pathologists. They may also be against the emergency room or pathologist themselves if they’re a separate entity.
What Components Constitute A Viable Medical Malpractice Claim?
You don’t have to be severely hurt to bring about a medical malpractice claim, but I would never bring a claim for a very minor injury. There must be a severe and significant claim, in my law office, for me to even look at the case. In Florida, one has to get an affidavit of substandard care signed by a practitioner, telling why that particular provider fell beneath the acceptable standard of care. This is a condition that has to be met before the claim can even be made.
What Damages May Someone Be Awarded In A Medical Malpractice Case?
Medical malpractice damages are the same as any other damages for any other personal injury. In Florida, you can claim damages for lost wages and lost earning capacity. You can obtain damages for loss of capacity to lead a normal life. This is different from pain and suffering damages, which are unlimited damages set by a Jury or by Settlement. For example, if a patient doesn’t have a high degree of pain but the damages cause the patient not to be able to do certain work functions that they need to do in their job, one can be compensated for past loss of income and future loss of income or for loss of past/future income capacity.
If you can work but you used to ride a bike or run on the beach and now you can’t do it, this is an impediment to your enjoyment of life. These are elements of damages in Florida. Depression is a form of loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life. It can be part and parcel of loss of enjoyment of life and not brought as a separate claim.
What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Medical Malpractice Claims In Florida?
The statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims is two years after you knew or should have known that you were suffering from malpractice. Many times, a person does not know that their inability to recover from an operation is due to a standard of care deviation. The time doesn’t start to run until the patient knew or should have known. It can be expanded up to four years, in certain circumstances. If there is concealment or fraud, it can be expanded to seven years. This is “fact driven” and governed by Statute and case law and may be quite complex.
Can I Still Recover Damages In A Medical Malpractice Claim If I Signed a Consent Form?
A medical provider cannot “contract away” their liability for malpractice. Even if you signed a form acknowledging the risks, an expert can testify, verifying that there is always an element of damage but a careful physician practicing within the standard of care should not cause the problems of this patient if the provider fell beneath the acceptable “standard of care” for their specialty.
For more information on Medical Malpractice Claims In Florida, a no obligation consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (813) 251-1000 today.