What is Medical Negligence?
Medical negligence is the legal term for when mistakes happen in the medical treatment provided to you. Medical professionals owe their patients a legal duty of care to treat them with reasonable care and skill; if the care provided falls below that standard, then a medical professional may have breached their duty of care towards their patient. If that breach of duty has caused an injury, then that patient may be able to make a legal claim for medical negligence. Medical negligence can occur in a number of different ways, including an incorrect or delayed diagnosis, a surgical mistake or incorrect treatment.
How do you bring a claim for Medical Negligence?
The first step is to contact our medical negligence lawyers for advice. We offer a free telephone consultation service, where we can provide you with some initial advice. If you have sufficient grounds to bring a claim for Clinical Negligence we will set up a free initial meeting with you to discuss your case. We can then discuss the best funding option for you, including a ‘No Win, No Fee’ agreement.
The next stage will be for us to obtain evidence in support of your case. We may need to obtain opinions from independent medical experts to see what their view is on the standard of care that you received. These experts are also able to assess any future health implications you may have as a result of the injuries you have suffered.
We try to settle claims out of court where possible. However, there are some instances where the defendant will not accept responsibility or alternatively is not willing to agree to pay the amount of compensation we believe you deserve. In those circumstances we will start court proceedings. This does not mean that your case will go to trial; we will continue to liaise with the defendant to try to bring your case to a successful conclusion.
In the unlikely event that your case goes to trial we will be there to guide and advise you throughout the whole process.
Why would you bring a claim for Medical Negligence?
Whilst financial compensation can make life easier, we appreciate that our clients want more than this. We understand that you want to find out exactly what happened, what went wrong and why, and what can be done to stop what has happened to you from happening to someone else. We aim to get you an explanation of what has gone wrong, and where appropriate an apology and admission of liability for any wrongdoing. Claims for Medical Negligence also often lead to systems and processes being changed, so that the problems you have experienced can be avoided in the future.
What can you claim Compensation for with regards to a Medical Negligence Claim?
The purpose of recovering compensation is to try and improve your quality of life, and where possible to restore you to the same quality of life you had before the negligence happened. In many cases this might be impossible, but financial compensation can help make things easier.
Compensation can be claimed for treatment costs, to help pay for treatment to improve your physical and psychological health. It can be claimed for lost earnings if you’ve needed time off work as a result of what has happened, or where you might have been left unable to work. If you’ve had to pay money out for carers, or for medical equipment or adaptations, you can also recover those costs. If any treatments, care or medical equipment are needed in the future, you can claim compensation to pay for those items too.
Any compensation will also need to take into account any physical and psychological pain and suffering that has been caused as a result of the negligence. This part of the claim can be difficult to value. We can look at what other cases have settled for at Trial, but the truth is that no two cases are exactly the same and so compensation varies from case to case. We will always investigate the issues that are relevant to your claim, and give you the best advice possible about the amount of compensation you might receive.