What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit – Guest Post

Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Medical malpractice can have devastating consequences for patients and their families. In addition to physical and emotional harm, victims of medical negligence often face financial burdens associated with medical expenses, lost wages, and ongoing care. If you are a victim looking to file a lawsuit for medical negligence, you will be awarded an amount as compensation for these losses. This is what damages in a civil lawsuit are all about.

Now, it’s in your best interest to understand what counts as damages and what doesn’t so that you’ll know what you can recover. In this blog post, we shed light on that and how you can maximize your claim.

Compensatory Damages

Compensatory damages are intended to compensate the victim for the losses and expenses incurred as a result of medical malpractice. These damages can be further categorized into economic and non-economic damages.

1. Economic Damages

Economic damages refer to the financial losses suffered by the victim due to medical malpractice. These may include:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation for past, current, and future medical bills related to treating injuries caused by malpractice, including hospital stays, surgeries, medication, rehabilitation, and therapy.
  • Lost Wages: Reimbursement for income lost due to the inability to work as a result of injuries sustained from medical negligence, including past and future lost earnings.
  • Loss of Earning Capacity: Compensation for the reduction in the victim’s ability to earn income in the future due to permanent disabilities or limitations caused by malpractice.
  • Additional Expenses: Coverage for other out-of-pocket expenses incurred as a result of the malpractice, such as transportation costs, home modifications, and assistive devices.

2. Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are intended to compensate you for intangible losses that do not have a specific monetary value.

This may include compensation for physical pain, emotional distress, and mental anguish caused by the malpractice, including the impact on your quality of life and overall well-being. You’ll want to have a medical malpractice lawyer working with you to estimate these damages and put them forward before the court. From their experience, a lawyer may be able to request a certain amount based on similar cases in the past, using this amount as a starting point for the jury to consider.

You may also receive compensation for the loss of Consortium. This is compensation for the negative impact the injuries have on your relationships with your spouse or family members, including loss of companionship, affection, and support.

Punitive Damages

In rare cases involving egregious misconduct or intentional wrongdoing by healthcare providers, punitive damages may be awarded in addition to compensatory damages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the practitioner for their actions and deter similar misconduct in the future. However, punitive damages are not available in all medical malpractice cases and are typically reserved for cases involving extreme negligence or recklessness.

Factors Affecting How Much You Will Be Awarded

Several key factors influence the amount of compensation you may receive in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Firstly, the severity and extent of your injuries play a significant role; more severe injuries typically result in higher compensation. Additionally, the level of negligence or misconduct by the healthcare provider can impact the awarded amount, with egregious cases often resulting in larger settlements.

Your past and future medical expenses, lost wages, and other financial losses are carefully considered when determining compensation. The jurisdiction where the case is filed, local laws, and the specific circumstances of your case also contribute to the final award amount.

It’s essential to have a skilled medical malpractice lawyer helping you throughout this process to ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries and losses.

How to Ensure You Get the Maximum Compensation You Deserve

To maximize your compensation in a medical malpractice lawsuit, proactive steps are essential.

  • Firstly, seek medical attention promptly and diligently follow all prescribed treatments and therapies to document your injuries and recovery process.
  • Keep detailed records of all medical expenses, including bills, receipts, and documentation of treatments.