When it comes to caring for their patients, doctors face a high standard. When a doctor fails to meet this standard set by their peers, the potential for a devastating medical error increases. These errors could involve mistakes during the diagnosis or the treatment of an injury or illness.
The law provides a civil remedy for when a doctor fails to meet the standards of care of his or her profession. A Middlebury medical malpractice lawyer could bring a civil claim against a negligent doctor or surgeon. If successful, this claim could lead to financial compensation for the harms and losses caused by the medical negligence.
If you are ready to take up the fight of a medical malpractice claim, you do not have to act alone. Drew Palcsik at Champlain Valley has the knowledge, skills, and tools to help your case. Speak to a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to learn about your options to hold the negligent medical professional accountable for your injuries and damages.
Special Requirements for Medical Malpractice Claims
Like with any lawsuit, a Middlebury medical malpractice attorney must file a civil complaint to initiate litigation. Medical malpractice cases require additional documentation that other injury claims do not. This requirement is known as the “certificate of merit.”
According to 12 V.S.A. Section 1042, the certificate must accompany the underlying complaint. The law requires you to make a sworn affidavit declaring that you consulted with a medical professional before filing the underlying complaint.
The medical professional must carefully review your medical records relating to the malpractice claim. The affidavit must reflect the medical professional believes there is a reasonable likelihood that the defendant’s actions caused you harm.
The inclusion of the certificate of merit is mandatory, and the failure to comply could result in the dismissal of a claim. That said, the dismissal would be “without prejudice,” allowing you to file suit again later.
Filing the Claim on Time
Filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in a timely manner is just as important as ensuring the claim was filed correctly. There is a strict deadline for filing each malpractice claim, known as the statute of limitations. Complying with this statute is important, as the failure to do so could result in the court dismissing the case entirely.
In general, you have three years to file a lawsuit after the injury occurs. Injuries and illnesses resulting from medical malpractice are a little different than other cases, though. In many situations, people may not become aware of an injury until after the statute of limitations expires.
Something called the “discovery rule” addresses this situation. This exception to the statute of limitations provides a patient with additional time to bring a lawsuit in some cases. Under the discovery rule, you may still bring a claim within two years of discovering the medical error, even if this occurs after the traditional statute of limitations expires. Since the statute of limitations to file a claim could be complicated it is best to speak with Drew to learn about filing a medical malpractice claim in Middlebury.
Contact a Middlebury Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
If a doctor, nurse, surgeon, technician, or hospital staff negligently causes you harm, you could hold them accountable in court. Drew Palcsik at Champlain Valley Law knows what it takes to handle a medical malpractice claim. Our legal team will investigate the incident and collect evidence to help you hold the negligent doctor accountable for their actions or lack thereof. Schedule a consultation with a Middlebury medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your case and legal options to recovering compensation for damages. Call today to get started on your case.