MEDICAL MALPRACTICE ATTORNEYS SERVING WOODSTOCK
At Williams Elleby, we know that it can be hard to find a medical malpractice lawyer for your Woodstock, Georgia case. The reason for this is that the major medical malpractice insurance companies in Georgia have powerful lobbyist that convinced Georgia politicians to pass laws that protect doctors at the expense of injured patients.
For example, in most personal injury cases the Plaintiff must prove that it is more likely than not that the Defendant’s negligence caused them harm. This is known as the preponderance of the evidence standard. Unfortunately, victims of medical malpractice in an emergency department must prove gross negligence by clear and convincing evidence. As you can see, Georgia law provides negligent doctors with more protections than everyday citizens. Attorney Joel Williams explains Georgia’s “Emergency Room Statute” is this video:
HOW TO WIN A WOODSTOCK MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE
A fair question we are often asked is “How do I win my Woodstock medical malpractice case?” There is an easy answer and a more complicated answer. The easy answer is that you must prove that the medical professional was negligent and that he or she caused you harm. Unfortunately, the way in which you prove this is complex which leads to the complicated answer.
The analysis of a medical malpractice case begins with a thorough review of all your medical records. Once your medical records are obtained, your attorney will need to review them. If your attorney believes that malpractice occurred, he or she will contact a medical expert and ask the expert to determine whether your doctor was negligent in violating the appropriate “standard of care.” If the expert determines there was not a violation of the standard of care, the attorney will probably decline your case. If the expert confirms that your doctor was negligent, your lawyer should work with you to prepare a lawsuit against all responsible parties.
Prior to filing a lawsuit in a Woodstock medical malpractice case, your attorney will need to work with the medical experts to secure an affidavit that complies with O.G.C.A. § 9-11-9.1. This statute requires the plaintiff to “file with the complaint an affidavit of an expert competent to testify, which affidavit shall set forth specifically at least one act or omission claimed to exist and the factual basis for each such claim.”
FILING A WOODSTOCK MEDICAL MALPRACTICE LAWSUIT
Once the necessary affidavit is obtained, a lawsuit will be filed against the doctor, nurse, or hospital that caused you harm. The medical professional’s malpractice insurance carrier will hire a law firm to defend the lawsuit and the discovery phase of the case will begin.
During discovery, the parties will exchange information and take depositions (out of court sworn testimony) of all relevant witnesses. Once discovery ends, the doctor’s attorney will likely file motions to try and get your case dismissed. If the defense attorney convinces the court to dismiss your case, your case will end unless you appeal the dismissal. If you defeat these motions, most judges will order the parties to attend a mediation. A mediation is a formal settlement conference hosted by a neutral that will try and help the parties reach a settlement agreement.
If the case settles at mediation, the lawsuit will be over and you should receive the settlement funds within a short time frame. If your Woodstock medical malpractice case does not settle at mediation, it will proceed to trial. Most medical malpractice trials take a week or longer due to the complex issues that must be resolved. The decision makers in any trial will be a twelve person jury and the verdict must be unanimous in order for you to win.
WOODSTOCK MEDICAL MALPRACTICE INJURIES
The injuries caused by negligent doctors vary widely because every human body is unique. Our bodies are composed of many working parts that must operate together in order to sustain life. We can be harmed in innumerable ways but some of the most common medical errors we encounter include diagnosis problems, medication errors, surgical errors, anesthesia errors, and errors in providing timely treatment.
A critical component of every medical malpractice case is determining the extent of your injuries. Cases involving death or catastrophic injuries may be worth millions of dollars. Other cases involving minor injuries may only be worth a few thousand dollars.
The reason it is so important to determine the potential value of your medical malpractice claim early is that Woodstock medical malpractice cases are very expensive to pursue. If your medical malpractice case proceeds to trial, you may incur well over $100,000.00 in litigation expenses. Most of these expenses are the result of retaining experts, taking depositions, and preparing for trial. As you can probably see, it makes little sense to spend $100,000.00 in order to recover for injuries that are valued at $50,000.00.
A competent medical malpractice lawyer will be able to help you understand the economics of a Woodstock medical malpractice case so you can decide whether it is worthwhile to pursue.