Losing a medical malpractice suit does not have to be the end of your case. If you have lost at the trial level, you could file an appeal for a higher court to review a case. Before taking this step, it may be beneficial to understand the appeals process and how an appeal could impact a case.
An appeal is generally not an opportunity to retry a case. Instead, it allows another court to review a trial court’s findings to determine if the lower court made an error. Consequently, appealing a Schenectady medical malpractice case is often incredibly complex, with strict timelines and filing requirements. It may benefit you to have an accomplished medical malpractice lawyer guide you through the appeals process and help ensure your appeals claim is viable and properly filed.
The Role of the Appellate Court in a Medical Malpractice Claim
It may be valuable to understand the hierarchy and role of each court in Schenectady. Medical malpractice cases are first filed in the Supreme Court, which is the trial court. People are eligible to file these lawsuits if they were injured by a healthcare provider’s departure from the accepted standard of care. The trial court hears directly from the injured parties and defendants, is presented evidence to support the facts of a case, and typically reaches a verdict.
After the verdict is delivered, people have the chance to appeal. They can file their appeal in one of the four Appellate Divisions of the Supreme Court. These courts are responsible for reviewing cases to determine whether the lower court:
- Correctly interpreted the laws
- Followed the proper rules and procedures
- Properly admitted evidence
- Ruled properly, given the information and evidence provided at trial
Generally, the appeals courts will not see or hear from litigants. To this effect, appealing a Schenectady medical malpractice claim does not mean that a person gets to retry their case, but an appeal could still lead to a different ruling.
Introducing New Information in An Appeal
The appellate court will rarely consider new information or facts in a medical malpractice case. The court will instead rely on the evidence presented at the trial level. However, this could complicate cases when an injured person learns or discovers new information that connects a doctor’s actions or inactions to their injury.
For the appellate court to consider new evidence, the information must be new to the person seeking review. If a party knew of the information or evidence at the time of the original motion, the Supreme Court mat admit it at their own discretion. To accomplish this, the person seeking to include new evidence must show a reasonable justification for failing to present these facts at the trial level.
Appealing A Schenectady Medical Malpractice Case with an Attorney’s Help
An appeal court can reverse the trial court’s decision and award damages for medical malpractice. While this provides an opportunity to seek compensation, appealing a Schenectady medical malpractice claim is incredibly complex. If you are considering an appeal, allow an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to help ensure that you abide by the strict appeal requirements. Get in touch with an attorney today to schedule a consultation and learn more about the potential for an appeal.