I need a good lawyer to sue a doctor. Would this be a personal injury lawyer or a trial lawyer?
As with any kind of legal matter, if you think you have a valid medical
malpractice claim, your best bet is hiring a lawyer who has significant
experience handling cases like yours. In fact, a lawyer’s experience may be
particularly important when it comes to medical malpractice cases, for a number
First, almost every medical malpractice case turns on the issue
of whether or not medical
negligence on the part of a doctor (or other health care professional) was
the cause of the patient’s injury or harm. It’s not enough to show a
less-than-desirable result after medical treatment.
The keys are 1)
establishing the medical standard of care, meaning the level of care that was
appropriate under the circumstances, and 2) demonstrating how the defendant
fell short of meeting that standard. And in almost all cases, you’ll need the
help of a medical
expert witness to help you establish these things. An experienced medical
malpractice attorney will be part of a network of professionals -- doctors, consultants,
medical experts who have served in a variety of cases, and other medical
malpractice attorneys -- and will utilize this network to locate and hire the
right medical expert for your case.
Second, from a procedural standpoint, medical malpractice cases
can be unique (and pretty complex) depending on the state where you live. You
(and your attorney) may very well need to jump through certain hoops when (or
soon after) filing the lawsuit, including filing
an affidavit of merit, complying with pre-lawsuit screening, and other
special procedures. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer will be very
familiar with these rules, and will know how to avoid pitfalls and delays so that
your case stays on track.
by: David Goguen, J.D.