What Are The First Steps To Take In A Medical Malpractice Case?
When patients visit doctors and hospitals, they expect to receive professional treatment keeping with prescribed medical standards of care. Unfortunately, routine surgeries and medical procedures can result in life-changing injuries or even death due to the negligence or otherwise careless behavior of medical professionals.
When injuries happen because doctors did not follow a standard of care, made a misdiagnosis, or performed their duties in a negligent manner, medical malpractice victims may be able to hold wrongdoers accountable by filing Minnesota medical malpractice lawsuits. While we should expect doctors to own up to their mistakes and compensate medical malpractice victims, hospital and their powerful insurance companies often attempt to cover up their mistakes and deny victims justice.
Following an injury caused by medical malpractice, victims should take certain steps to help ensure they are compensated for their injuries. Without compensation, victims may be left with extreme financial hardships that may only compound the difficulties of facing a lifetime of medical care stemming from the injury.
Speak to the Doctors Involved
Before taking any legal action, medical malpractice victims should contact the doctor or hospital they believe was at fault. This is important for a variety of reasons. To begin, speaking to the medical providers involved can help patients gather a variety of information to help them understand the causes of their injuries and help make a stronger case if legal action is necessary.
Contact the State Medical Board
Should the doctor or hospital be unwilling to resolve the situation, medical malpractice victims should contact their state’s medical board and inform them of the situation. Although state medical boards cannot compel doctors to provide financial compensation, they may conduct their own investigation and discipline the medical provider.
Understand the Statute of Limitations
Minnesota and Wisconsin, like most states, have time limits on how long victims have to file lawsuits against those they believe have caused them harm. If claims are not filed within these prescribed time limits, victims may be unable to hold wrongdoers accountable and receive compensation for their injuries.
The statute of limitations for medical malpractice lawsuits in Minnesota is two years. In Wisconsin, the time limit is three years from the date of the incident or within one year of the victim discovering the cause was medical negligence.
Get a Medical Evaluation to Confirm your Injuries
Medical malpractice suits hinge on medical evidence documenting the cause of the injury, how it could have been avoided, and the extent it will have on a person’s well-being. For these reasons, victims will need to consult with a medical expert to diagnose all of these factors.
To file medical malpractice lawsuits in Minnesota, plaintiffs must acquire an affidavit from a medical expert to testify at trials and help verify medical malpractice claims. In Wisconsin, there are no such statutes requiring expert testimony to establish causation in medical malpractice cases.
Contact our Minnesota Medical Malpractice Attorneys
If you or a loved one suffered an injury due to a health care provider’s negligence or otherwise careless behavior, contact the Minnesota medical malpractice attorneys of Novitzke, Gust, Sempf, Whitley & Bergmanis online or by calling 715-268-6130 . For over 40 years, our attorneys have fought for the legal rights of injury victims throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin and are prepared to do the same for you.