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Originally Posted On: https://cooktolley.com/2023/02/how-to-choose-a-medical-malpractice-lawyer-what-you-need-to-know/
Imagine your wife is in labor and needs a C-section. Now imagine the obstetrician failing to perform the medical procedure in time, causing severe injuries to your baby. This scenario would be terrible, but the truth is situations like these do occur. In this event, the next course of action would be to choose a medical malpractice lawyer to review your case. However, choosing carefully is important because not all lawyers are equal.
If you think you have a medical malpractice case, this article is for you. We’ve got everything you need to know right here, so keep reading to learn more.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice occurs when a medical provider causes injury to a patient through medical negligence. If this injury was found to have been preventable, it’s classed as medical malpractice.
While there are many reasons someone may need a medical malpractice lawyer, there are some common ones. They are:
- Medication mistakes
- Surgical errors
- Failure to diagnose
- Birth injuries
If you are injured due to mistakes made by your medical professional, you will present your case to a malpractice lawyer. One thing to remember is lawyers use different fee structures.
Some may charge an hourly rate, a flat rate, or a contingency fee, where they get a percentage of the final settlement awarded. Speak to an experienced attorney if you need clarification on whether you have a valid medical malpractice claim.
Where to Look for a Medical Malpractice Lawyer?
When choosing a medical malpractice lawyer for your case, there are a few places to find one. Let’s have a look at a few of those options here.
Asking friends, family, or business associates for recommendations is an excellent place to begin your search. If anyone you know has had a medical malpractice case, ask them for their lawyer’s contact details. If their experience with the lawyer was good with a successful claim result, they should gladly pass you the information you need.
If your friend has used a lawyer for reasons other than medical malpractice, don’t pass up the contact details too quickly. If you contact them, they may be able to refer you to a lawyer who can assist you with your medical claim.
Contact Your Local Bar Association
Another easy way to find a medical malpractice lawyer is to contact your local bar association. They can provide a list of qualified legal professionals to review your claim.
Another place to look for a suitable medical malpractice lawyer is your local state bar association. These state bar associations maintain records of any disciplinary actions taken against lawyers, which are available to the public.
It’s important to understand that the association does not endorse lawyers listed on a state bar association. For this reason, you should always do further research to decide if they’re the right lawyer for you.
Arguably the most popular method of finding anything is using the internet. Search with targeted keywords such as “local medical malpractice lawyer,” “medical malpractice lawyer in (state),” or “medical malpractice lawyer near me.” Using these targeted keywords makes you more likely to get useful results from your search.
Once you’ve found a few legal firms that meet your requirements, spend time comparing lawyer fees and services and reading online reviews left by previous clients. Anyone with too many negative reviews or who doesn’t handle medical malpractice matters should be passed over.
Questions to Ask Before You Hire
Once you’ve found the legal firm you’re willing to work with, you still need to ask a few questions to ensure they’re a suitable match. Let’s review some essential questions you should ask when talking to your lawyer.
1. What Is Your Level of Expertise?
Asking about their expertise level is essential because you want to find a lawyer trained to take on medical malpractice cases like yours. Many lawyers will have experience in several types of medical malpractice cases but may specialize in one particular area, such as surgical errors or birth injuries.
2. What Is Your Trial Experience?
When you file a medical malpractice claim, it may go to trial. You want to know if your lawyer has experience representing clients in the courtroom, so asking this question before you hire them is essential. You want to find a lawyer with comprehensive trial experience.
3. What Resources Do You Have?
Your chosen firm must have enough resources if you want a good chance of winning your medical malpractice case. You want to choose a medical malpractice lawyer whose firm can financially support your lawsuit for further investigations, witnesses, etc.
4. What Is the Statute of Limitations?
A statute of limitations limits your time to sue the at-fault party. If you take too long to file your case, you could miss this window, resulting in the courts dismissing your case. Typically, the statute of limitations on malpractice lawsuits is two or three years post-negligence, but you must confirm the rules with your lawyer.
5. How Many Cases Do You Take at One Time?
One of the final recommended questions is how many cases they take on simultaneously. You don’t want to hire an overworked lawyer with so many lawsuits it takes months to get to yours. The average number of suits for most lawyers is three; however, those with more experience can take on up to ten active cases.
Choose a Medical Malpractice Lawyer Who Will Fight
If the worst happens and you’re involved in a medical malpractice lawsuit, having the right lawyer is essential to your chances of winning. Review potential lawyers to ensure you hire the best one for your case.
Knowing where to look and what questions to ask are crucial if you want to choose a medical malpractice lawyer with experience handling cases like yours. Remember to ask what they specialize in before you hire.
If you’re looking for a law firm that will fight to win your case, reach out to us today. We have experienced legal professionals waiting to serve you at the highest level.
Cook & Tolley, LLP
304 E Washington
St Athens, GA 30601