What Are The Elements Of A Medical Negligence Claim?
Medical errors that result in patient injuries are devastating. Patients should be able to trust their health care providers with their safety and care, and patients should be able to anticipate that experts in specific medical fields will not make mistakes that will result in debilitating or fatal injuries. Yet medical mistakes do happen, and patients do suffer serious harm. In order to file a successful medical negligence claim against a health care provider, you will need to be able to prove the elements of a medical malpractice claim.
Elements of a Birmingham Medical Malpractice Claim
Most medical negligence claims in Birmingham require a patient to prove the following elements:
- Health care provider owed the patient a duty of care;
- Health care provider breached the duty of care through negligence;
- Patient suffered an injury; and
- Patient’s injury was caused by the health care provider’s negligence.
You Must Prove Negligence to Win Your Claim
How can you prove that a health care provider was negligent in Birmingham? Typically, you will need to be able to show that the health care provider provided a level of care that was less than the standard of care another provider in a similar medical field in Birmingham would have considered reasonable and appropriate. In other words, you will need evidence that another doctor in the same field or similar field would consider your doctor’s care to be substandard under the circumstances.
The typical way to prove the negligence portion of your claim, or to prove that your health care provider breached the duty of care, is to obtain expert medical testimony from an expert witness. One of our experienced Birmingham medical malpractice attorneys can work with you to identify the best expert witness for your case, and we can begin gathering evidence to show that you are entitled to compensation as a result of the injuries you sustained.
You Must File Your Lawsuit Before the Statute of Limitations Runs Out
Beyond being able to prove the elements of a medical malpractice claim in Alabama, it is important to remember that you will only be eligible for financial compensation if you file your lawsuit before the statute of limitations runs out. Most medical negligence claims in Birmingham must be filed within two years from the date of your health care provider’s negligence that resulted in the injury.
However, in cases where the patient did not immediately discover the injury, a patient may have more than two years to file a claim. When a patient did not immediately discover (and should not have reasonably discovered) the injury, then the patient can have six months from the date of discovery to file a claim. However, the lawsuit must still be filed within four years from the date of the initial harm.
Contact a Birmingham Medical Negligence Attorney
Anyone who has suffered wrongdoing or has sustained an injury as a result of medical negligence in Alabama may be able to file a claim, and our firm can help. One of the experienced Birmingham medical negligence lawyers at Goldasich, Vick & Fulk can evaluate your case for you today and can provide you with more information about seeking compensation for injuries caused by a health care provider’s error.