Determining the odds of winning a medical malpractice suit is extremely difficult, however, when examining the evidence an attorney should be able to give you an idea of how strong your case is and your chances of winning. There are obstacles that often stand in the way of a patient’s ability to successfully sue a doctor for medical malpractice. These obstacles, combined with statistics surrounding past medical malpractice lawsuits, show the reality of how difficult it can be when a patient attempts to claim that medical malpractice has occurred.
Filing on time is one of the first obstacles a patient will encounter when it comes to filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Depending on what state you are filing in, the laws may vary on how much time you have to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Florida law requires that a medical malpractice lawsuit be filed within two years of discovering the injury or at the latest four years from when the medical malpractice was believed to have happened.
Aside from filing within the statute of limitations, another obstacle often encountered is the need to produce an incredibly strong case. Hiring the right attorney is crucial with all court cases, but particularly so with medical malpractice as judges tend to side more with the doctor based on statistics. Having a strong case can be simple in some situations and difficult in others. A doctor completely ignoring protocol for surgery or injecting a patient with the wrong medicine is much easier to prove than proving something as obscure as accusing a doctor of misdiagnosing a condition.
According to the Clinical Orthopedics and Related Research Journal physicians win 80% to 90% of jury trials where there is weak evidence of medical negligence. Additionally, their studies show that physicians win approximately 70% of borderline cases, and they win 50% of despite strong evidence of medical negligence.
Their studies also show that of the patients that actually won their medical malpractice suit, 5% received a payout for diagnostic or treatment errors and 13% received a payout for surgical or procedural errors and 27% received some type of compensation for medication errors.
While this information can seem intimidating when considering filing a medical malpractice suit, much of your success depends upon hiring an attorney that is knowledgeable and will fight for you. If you believe you may be the victim of medical malpractice, don’t hesitate to contact us today!