How would you describe medical negligence?

Professional negligence where by a health care provider acts in a way or omits to act in a way which results in the standard of care being provided drop below an acceptable level, this drop in standard may then cause a patient harm or even death. Across the globe standards regulations of medical professionals do very greatly, therefore many liability insurers will offer different levels cover for health professionals in order to off set this – also referred to as clinical negligence.

What types of claims can be classed as medical negligence?

Potential claims which a medical solicitor can help you with include, but are not limited to, misdiagnosis, birth injury, delay in diagnosis, inadequate care, illness caused by an unclean hospital, incorrect medication, unnecessary treatment or detrimental surgery.

Can I legally claim medical negligence?

If you have suffered due to an accident which was not your fault then you could receive a compensatory payment, it is your civil and legal right to make a claim for this payment with the idea that this money will help you get your life back on track. If your ability to do your job has been affected and you have lost earnings as a result, or you have incurred travel, medical or other expenses, then you should also be compensated. In some circumstances, if extra care and assistance is required by family and friends as a result of your injury you may also be eligible.

How much will it cost to make a claim?

Your medical negligence solicitor will probably not charge for an initial consultation and they should also advise you as to the available options, including any ‘no win no fee’ arrangements.

The incident occurred a while ago — is there a cut-off point?

You generally have three years from the incident in which to bring a claim, although there are exceptions depending on the specific facts of your case.

My child was the victim of medical negligence, can I make a claim for them?

A child’s parent or guardian can make a claim for the child. In order to look after the interests of the child any money paid out via settlement or judgement is put aside as an investment for when the child turns 18.

Is it worthwhile making a claim?

Even a relatively minor incident may be worth more in compensation than you would expect, however an experienced medical negligence solicitor can advise you further.

Will I have to attend court?

Most cases in this area are settled outside of the court room. If a court hearing does prove necessary an experienced medical negligence solicitor will guide and support you through the process.

In what manner can I help my claim along?

You must hang on to any receipts, invoices etc that you have paid out on as a direct result of your accident, also retain your work payslips if your employment has been effected – and pass them to your medical solicitor. It is also useful to keep a diary of any visits to doctors, hospital, dentists, physiotherapy, etc. and a record of your pain and symptoms.

If you’re thinking of making a medical compensation claim, make sure that you appoint a specialist medical negligence solicitor. One of the best ways of identifying specialists is checking on panel membership — in particular membership of the Law Society Clinical Negligence Accreditation Scheme and the AvMA (Action against Medical Accidents) panel.

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