After sustaining a traumatic injury from medical malpractice, it is more than reasonable to worry about your health and wonder if you will ever fully recover. You may also be overwhelmed by the ensuing medical bills and your inability to return to work.

No matter how severe your injuries, a hard-working lawyer could help you through the process of a Kingston medical malpractice case. Compassionate medical malpractice attorneys could take the lead and guide you through the legal procedures necessary to pursue financial recovery for your injuries.

Beginning the Process of a Hospital Error Lawsuit

As noted in New York Civil Practice Law & Rules §304, the formal process of a lawsuit begins when a filing is made. Potential plaintiffs should note that they must file their case within the applicable deadline set by the statute of limitations, which is two years and six months from the date of injury.

Plaintiffs must also meet the certificate of merit requirement established by NY CPLR §3012-a for their case to be heard. Given the numerous prerequisites to filing a medical malpractice case, potential plaintiffs may benefit greatly from contacting a Kingston attorney immediately.

Pre-Trial Procedures

After a medical malpractice case is filed, the named defendant(s) in the lawsuit have 30 days to formally respond by filing an answer. Once the defendant gives their response, the discovery process begins. During discovery, each side shares information that can be used as evidence in the case. This may include:

  • Requests for admission
  • Past and present medical records
  • Depositions and testimonies
  • Law enforcement reports, if applicable
  • Written interrogatories
  • Requests for the production of specific documents

It is not uncommon for the discovery process to take months or even a year. Typically, the amount of information shared between the parties will increase if the complexity of the case increases.

Within the discovery process, many medical malpractice plaintiffs are asked to receive an independent medical examination (IME). Normally, the IME is done by an independent medical provider chosen by the defense team.

After the examination is completed, the defense will compare the information submitted in discovery with the findings of the IME. Reaching out to legal counsel in Kingston could help individuals learn more about the discovery process for their particular medical malpractice case.

Settlements for Medical Mistakes

As the discovery process continues and both parties become more aware of the evidence in the case, settlement negotiations may begin. However, it is important for plaintiffs to keep in mind that a pre-trial settlement negotiation is not required in the state of New York.

While insurance companies for the defense may often wish to set a precedent of not settling to help avoid further litigation in the future, many cases could be and are successfully settled out of court. Compared to a full court trial, both the defendant and the plaintiff may find that the settlement litigation process is less expensive, less time-consuming, and less financially risky for both sides.

Going to Trial for Hospital or Doctor Error Cases

If settlement negotiations were not attempted or could not be reached, the next step in the medical malpractice claim process is a trial by jury or judge. During the trial, the previously collected evidence is presented for the court to decide who wins the case.

If the plaintiff successfully proves their case, the court also dictates how much they are owed. Plaintiffs should keep in mind that while it may take a year or two for the case to go to trial, the trial itself may last several days or weeks. A Kingston attorney who is familiar with the medical malpractice claims process could explain how the court’s schedule and the complexity of the case may impact the time it may take to go to trial and reach a verdict.

Get Help with the Process of a Kingston Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Pursuing a Kingston medical malpractice case could be a daunting task if you are recovering from physical, mental, emotional, and financial injuries. To get dedicated assistance with your case, retaining a competent medical malpractice attorney may be in your best interests.

An accomplished lawyer may be able to help you fight for justice. Call today to schedule a consultation and learn more about the process of a Kingston medical malpractice case.