Medical Malpractice Lawyers
If you have been significantly injured or harmed due to medical malpractice, you should consider legal action. By filing a lawsuit, you may be able to hold the health care provider accountable and receive compensation for your medical bills and other losses or for those of a loved one, if the act of negligence led to your loved one’s death.
At Thomas Hunter Law Firm in Savannah, GA, we understand the nuances and scope of medical malpractice law and we are committed to seeking justice for those who have experienced medical negligence.
Mr. Hunter, who has years of experience in personal injury litigation of all types, knows how to prosecute your claim best and has a thorough understanding of medical malpractice cases. So get in touch with Thomas Hunter Law Firm today to get started on your claim!
Top 10 Benefits Of Hiring A Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Below are some of the advantages of hiring a knowledgeable attorney for your medical malpractice legal process:
1. Dealing With Insurance Companies
Dealing with insurance companies is one of the most challenging components of making a medical malpractice claim. These cases almost always require that suit be filed and suits must be filed in just the right way. A suit against a doctor is very personal to that doctor, since it hits him or her at their very essence – the proper care of their patient. Doctors fight these claims defiantly and there are peculiar aspects of the doctor’s professional liability coverage that encourage them to do so. Consequently, you will get nowhere trying to handle a medical malpractice claim on your own. A lawyer will examine your claim – liability and damages – and decide whether a suit is warranted under the circumstances.
2. Managing The Never-Ending Paperwork
Malpractice claims necessarily involve mountains of medical evidence – hospital records, prior medical records, test results, lab reports, operative reports and notes, etc. In addition, there are the documents involved with prosecuting a claim. Legal requirements and procedures can be headaches, if you’re not familiar with them, but attorneys have the know-how and systems in place to deal with them. For example, in a medical malpractice claim, a large volume of medical documentation must be examined, potential experts must be identified, interviewed and employed, the lawyers must interact with the experts to identify actionable negligence by the defendant-parties, depositions must be taken, motions must be filed and responded to and on and on. However, attorneys who are familiar with the work necessary to handle these cases, are also undaunted by the mountain of paperwork they involve.
3. Knowing How Much A Claim Is Worth
How much might a future jury, one composed of people from currently unknown walks of life, people you do not know, say your claim is worth, after hearing all of the evidence in your case and after sizing up the parties, witnesses and lawyers? That is the question in every personal injury case, including medical malpractice cases.
There is no book, resource or standard you (or your lawyer, for that matter) can consult to determine the actual value of your claim. In truth, every claim, ultimately, is worth exactly – and only – what some future jury says it is worth after years of litigation and after a trial. Short of going all the way through trial, however, a claim is worth what the two sides of the controversy can agree it is worth. Looking at prior case settlements or verdicts can provide helpful guidance, of course, but, like they say in the financial world, past experience is no guarantee of future performance. Just because a “similar” case settled for a sum, or a jury rendered a verdict for a sum, does not mean your result will be the same, more or less. Prior results were in the past and the facts and circumstances will differ in your case from every other claim that ever was or ever will be. A jury that heard another case, some other time, will be different than a jury you might see a year or two or more down the road.
Different insurance companies have different claims philosophies and claims practices. Some will make you file suit before they will take your claim seriously. That is the case in almost all medical malpractice cases. Some insurers rely upon human experience in setting claims reserves; some rely upon artificial intelligence or historical data programs to create statistical valuations.
In some rare cases, liability will be admitted; in most, liability will be contested. The personalities of the parties will differ; the type, amount and nature of injuries and treatment will differ; the life experiences of the parties will differ; the credibility and persuasiveness of the medical providers will differ; the evidence of future consequences on the injured party will differ, and on and on. Basically, anything that can persuade or tilt (yes, bias or prejudice) a jury one way or another can affect the value of your case.
So, how is your claim valued? If you represent yourself, the insurance company knows that you lack knowledge of the process, and, likely, the law, and they will likely ignore you. If, by chance, you did get their attention and they offered you anything, it would be negligible or far less than your claim is worth. If you represent yourself, they know that you pose no immediate threat. If you have an experienced malpractice lawyer, however, the insurer will realize that your lawyer would not take on your claim unless it likely has merit and significant value. The mere fact that your lawyer will invest significant time and money in your case sends them a signal that your claim deserves attention and that you deserve compensation.
Ultimately, your lawyer will consider a wide range of factors – lost earnings, medical expenses, pain and suffering, permanent disabilities, physical restrictions, the probably makeup (conservative/liberal, rural/urban) makeup of a future jury, and the probability of success at trial, among others, to develop a reasonable settlement range for your claim.
There are no substitutions for experience, knowledge, credibility and tenaciousness. It is important to have a lawyer represent you, but it is even more important to have the right lawyer represent you. The right lawyer will value your claim from the totality of your circumstances and the factors involved in your case and will consult with you in arriving at a settlement position. Pick your lawyer with care. The more experience the lawyer has, the better he or she will be at assessing the value of your case and getting fair value for you.
4. Negotiating The Best Possible Settlement.
Experienced personal injury attorneys deal with insurance company adjusters and lawyers all the time, but the practice of medical malpractice law is a different and specialized animal. Insurance companies know which lawyers put their clients’ best interests first and will do whatever it takes to make sure their clients are treated and compensated fairly. Experienced personal injury attorneys know “what legal buttons to push”, what data and evidence the insurers want to see to complete their files, how to establish a rapport with those on the other side, what psychological approaches to take with insurance company adjusters and their lawyers and how to lead the insurance companies down the path toward a satisfactory resolution of your claim. Good personal injury attorneys have a knack for negotiating. A personal injury lawyer wants those on the other side – the adjusters and their attorneys – to think of him or her as being smart and tough, but also fair. Credibility and reputation are important attributes for a good personal injury attorney. An experienced personal injury attorney won’t be intimidated by the legal team of an insurance company and he or she will know how to construct a bargaining strategy that works.
5. Prosecuting Your Case In Front Of A Judge Or Jury
If a case cannot be reasonably settled, the personal injury attorney will present the plaintiff’s case to a jury. The attorney must be able to assemble the evidence, comply with the law and civil procedure, comfortably and pleasantly present the case in a simple, but interesting, understandable and compelling way and to “connect” with the judge or jury in a way that puts his client’s case in the most favorable light. Persuasion is the art of bringing others over to your point of view and that is an attribute that a good personal injury attorney cannot do without.
6. Making Sure You Don’t Make Any Mistakes
It’s what you don’t know that can really hurt you. That is true for life, in general, but it is absolutely true when dealing with a medical malpractice claim. You cannot handle this type of claim on your own. From the moment of the negligent act, everything anyone does or says, and, sometimes, some of what is not done or said, can be evidence in your case. Having an experienced personal injury lawyer to guide and advise you after your injury can be extremely important. Since there is the possibility that one day you may have to stand before a jury to seek fair compensation, everything, and I mean everything, has to be viewed through the prism of “How would this or that look to a jury, if it was presented to the jury as a part of the evidence of your case?”
Usually, if you make mistakes, it costs you money. If you don’t know what to ask, when to ask for it, who to ask, how much to ask for and what to do that is most likely to get you what you want and deserve, your “mistakes” can cost you. You’re considerably more prone to make these errors if you have no clue how to prosecute injury claims. An experienced personal injury attorney will avoid those mistakes.
Medical malpractice claims are a special category of personal injury practice and often have much stricter requirements that ordinary negligence claims. For example, in Georgia, in order to prosecute a medical malpractice claim, the complaint needs to be accompanied with a proper affidavit, signed by a competent medical practitioner in the same field, citing at least one act or omission by the defendant that fell below the requisite standard of care expected of practitioners in that field or specialty. Medical malpractice claims are not cases for laypersons to be their own lawyers!
7. Speed Up The Case
People often say that “Time is money,” and smart people understand the time value of money. Insurance companies certainly understand the time value of money – they want to hold onto their money for as long as they can so they can earn as much as the can earn on that money while they hold it. An intelligent lawyer like Mr. Hunter understands that there is an optimal time to resolve every case, that is, when his clients’ damages are clearly determined or ascertainable. He is committed to moving each case forward, in order that his clients receive satisfactory results at the earliest possible time. We understand that it is better for you to be compensated for your damages at soon as possible, so that you can use those funds to get your life back on track.
8. Saving You Time
A medical malpractice claim is a complicated process that can take time to complete, even by the most experienced plaintiff’s attorney. If you believe you or a loved one were harmed through the negligence of a medical provider, it is important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible for guidance and advice. If a death occurred, an independent autopsy is invaluable in proving the claim. Your attorney will know how to “separate the wheat from the chaff”, know where to look and what to look for, to determine whether a claim exists and whether it is feasible to prosecute. Medical malpractice claims, are expensive to prosecute and involve countless hours of investigation, research, review of medical records, consultations with experts, depositions (sometimes around the country!), motions, briefs, and on and on. Your lawyer in one of these claims will earn his or her money! These are not claims that can be handled well by those without the knowledge and experience in this field of law. Your first and most important task should be to seek legal counsel as soon as you perceive that something went wrong – for example, in an operation, a prescription side effect or a failure to properly diagnose or to read or interpret tests or diagnostics in a timely fashion – and let your lawyer provide guidance and handle it from there, if a good claim exists.
9. Tapping Resources
When you engage an attorney, the attorney will consider what will be necessary to prevail in your case, including what evidence is necessary and who can provide that evidence. Oftentimes, that “evidence” will be medical expert evidence, people who are well-trained, who are familiar with technical medical terms, procedures, treatment protocols and standards of care. Since plaintiffs have the burden of proof in almost every aspect of a civil trial, they must, for instance, prove that actionable negligence occurred. The doctor on trial for negligence will, of course, deny that he did nothing wrong, so having a similarly-qualified doctor refute that and specify exactly what the defendant doctor did or did not do that constituted negligence is essential to the success of these claims.
10. Having Someone On Your Side.
It is comforting to have an advocate, someone who will stand up for you, care for you, support you and do what is necessary to make sure your interests are served. Your attorney is one person you should be able to reach, who will answer your questions, explain the anticipated timeline of your case, explain the strengths, weakness and possible outcomes of your claim. Having someone on your side also means having someone who will “tell it to you straight.” When you select the appropriate lawyer, you can be assured that you will always have an ally on your side.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Who May Be Responsible For Medical Negligence?
- Medical Doctors (of every specialty)
- Staff at the hospital
Do The Majority Of Medical Malpractice Cases End Up In Trial?
Professional Medical Malpractice Attorney In Savannah, GA
Thomas Hunter Law Firm’s Savannah medical malpractice lawyer assists individuals who have been affected by preventable medical errors as well as families who have lost loved ones as a result of medical errors.
You will not be charged any upfront costs at Thomas Hunter Law Firm. We are only compensated for our services if we are successful in recovering damages on your behalf. Our knowledgeable attorney can help you with every area of your claim and fight for the highest possible compensation.
A construction or building site is typically chaotic, and when a construction worker is hurt or killed, any one or more entities may be held legally accountable. It could include the site owner, contractors, subcontractors, or machinery or equipment manufacturers. In addition, while employees may be eligible for compensation through their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance, certain workers may also be entitled to compensation through a third-party claim, which may be instead of or in addition to workers’ compensation.