The state of Texas, much like every other state, contains several notable variations of negligence laws, which are highly state-specific in nature. In essence, if a case falls under Texas jurisdiction, the ability to file suit and eventual outcome of a medical malpractice case will be subject to influence from these Texas specific medical negligence laws.
Notable Texas Medical Negligence Laws
The following list outlines some of the most notable state-specific variations in medical negligence laws for the state of Texas. These state-specific variations will differ from other states, and furthermore, the following list only addresses some of the most notable variations. In reality, the only definitive method of determining the potential influence of any and all Texas medical negligence laws on an individual medical malpractice case will be through consulting with a medical malpractice lawyer.
- Comparative or Contributory Negligence: Since 2007, the state of Texas has adhered to a doctrine of modified comparative negligence, which means that cases involving negligence committed by a patient by more than fifty percent will bar the patient from recovery of damages entirely. In cases where responsibility for negligence or fault is less than fifty percent, a patient’s damage recovery amount is diminished proportional to the level of contributory fault incurred.
- Vicarious Liability of Hospitals: In the state of Texas, a patient can hold a hospital liable for the actions of direct employees, per the doctrine of respondeat superior. In the event the negligent party is an independent contractor, a patient can only hold a hospital liable for damages if they can prove the individual committing negligence exhibited ostensible agency with the hospital.
- Expert Testimony Requirements: In the state of Texas, a patient must provide expert testimony addressing the nature of liability and cause of action for legal action no later than one hundred and twenty (120) days following filing an initial medical negligence claim. This expert testimony must be provided to all parties named in a given lawsuit.
- Statutory Caps on Damages: Currently, the state of Texas caps the amount of non-economic damages recoverable in medical negligence cases filed after September 1st, 2003 at $250,000 from all individuals and $250,000 from all institutions or corporations, for a total of $500,000 in any case.
Getting Legal Help with Texas Medical Negligence Laws
In short, the only reliable method of determining the viability and relative strength of a medical malpractice case, as well as determining the potential damage amounts recoverable, will be through consulting with a Texas medical malpractice lawyer directly. Consult with a medical malpractice lawyer in Texas to learn specifically about the applicable state medical negligence laws that may influence the outcome of your case, in light of the highly case-specific elements of each medical negligence claim.