Medical Malpractice

When Is It Medical Malpractice? A Guide to Malpractice Laws


Every year, around 17,000 medical malpractice laws claims are filed in the United States. However, not every claim is successful. 

Before you file a claim, it is important that you properly understand medical malpractice laws. This is the best way to ensure that your claim meets the criteria for medical malpractice.

Read on to find out everything you need to know about these laws.

What Is Medical Malpractice? 

Malpractice is the term given when a medical professional or facility causes injury to a patient. This may be as the result of negligent care or it may be as a result of omissive care.

However, although more than 250,000 people die each year due to medical errors, not all of these count as malpractice cases. Let’s find out why. 

How Medical Malpractice Laws Work

Whether a case falls under medical malpractice depends on whether or not it meets the strict legal definition. A case must feature: 

  • A doctor failing to meet their appropriate standard of care during treatment
  • Negligent behavior resulting in an illness or injury that would not have happened otherwise
  • Injuries that resulted in significant damages for the patient, such as medical bills, loss of earnings, or physical and emotional suffering

When it comes to damages, the claimant must provide proof of these damages. For example, you might provide a copy of your medical bills.

It is important to note that minor damages may not be worth making a claim against. You should always assess whether the cost of damages is greater than the cost of hiring medical malpractice law firms and making a claim.

See also  A Review of Personal Injury Cases

Examples of Medical Malpractice 

Medical malpractice and negligence can occur in a whole range of medical circumstances. To understand these better, here are some common examples: 

  • Failure to diagnose a condition or misdiagnosis
  • Ignoring or failing to read lab and test result correctly
  • Carrying out unnecessary surgery
  • Errors made during surgery, including surgery being performed at the wrong site
  • Improper use of medication or dosage
  • Wrongful death
  • Poor quality after-care for patients
  • Premature discharge, especially if this results in a readmission
  • Failing to take a proper patient history or disregarding a patient’s history
  • Failure to carry out the appropriate tests on a patient, especially if this results in misdiagnosis
  • Failure to recognize symptoms in a patient, especially if this results in misdiagnosis

Of course, some of these errors can occur without a claim immediately becoming medical malpractice. 

Misdiagnosis, for example, can happen to a doctor if symptoms are not presenting in a standard way. A malpractice case would occur if a doctor failed to diagnose a patient because of negligent behavior. This might include not ordering the appropriate tests or ignoring their symptoms or family history.

Get Help Today

Have you read these malpractice laws and think you might have been the victim of medical malpractice? Then you should get in touch with medical malpractice lawyers. They will help you put together a successful compensation claim.

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