According to the New York Times, around 200,000 people die each and every year in the United States as a result of medical mistakes that could have been prevented. This is a tremendous and tragic loss of life that could be avoided if physicians and healthcare providers exercised the care expected of those within the healing professions.
If you have lost a loved one as a result of medical malpractice, the statistics on the high number of deaths will likely provide no comfort to you. Nothing can make up for the loss of your family member or ease the grief that you are feeling at the death. You may also be concerned about your financial state after the death, and you may wish to ensure that the healthcare provider who caused the death is held accountable.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, our Boston wrongful death attorneys understand how devastating it can be when you lose someone you love at the hands of a healthcare provider who was supposed to help. We can assist you in making sure you obtain fair and just compensation for your loss.Understanding Wrongful Death Medical Malpractice Cases
Doctors and all healthcare providers are required by law to provide reasonably competent care. Whether a healthcare provider lives up to this obligation is determined by assessing that provider’s behavior and actions as compared to what a hypothetical reasonable caregiver with the same background would have done. If no other doctor would have made the mistake that this doctor made, for example, then the doctor was unreasonably negligent and needs to be held legally liable.
Liability for medical malpractice wrongful death can arise out of many different types of mistakes made by healthcare providers. For example, a healthcare provider could cause a death by:
- Carelessly botching a surgery
- Leaving a surgical instrument inside a patient and causing an infection
- Providing an unclean environment that results in a deadly bacterial infection
- Misdiagnosing a medical condition or diagnosing an incorrect condition
In these and other situations, something the healthcare provider did – or failed to do- was unreasonably careless and negligent.
It is also important to prove that the doctor or care provider’s negligence was a direct cause of the death. Proving causation can sometimes be challenging as the care provider may try to argue the death would have occurred even in the absence of negligence. A Boston wrongful death attorney can help.Obtaining Compensation in Wrongful Death Medical Malpractice Cases
In almost every case, you will be dealing with a medical malpractice insurance company in order to try to obtain compensation for your lost loved one. Insurance companies do not care to compensate you fairly but instead want to pay as little as possible for your claim.
As the victim, on the other hand, you need to ensure that you are compensated for the medical bills and funeral expenses incurred for the deceased. You also need to obtain monetary damages for loss of companionship since your life is diminished by the loss of your relationship with the deceased. The deceased is no longer able to make a financial contribution or provide income to your family, and so lost income should be recovered from the healthcare provider who caused the death. Finally, in certain instances, you may wish to pursue a claim for punitive damages.
You can obtain your compensation through a personal injury lawsuit or through settling, but in either case it is important to have legal representation. A Boston wrongful death lawyer can stand up to the medical malpractice insurer and can fight for your rights.
Massachusetts does, however, impose certain limits on medical malpractice damages including a $500,000 cap on non-economic damages for things like loss of companionship. There are exceptions to this cap, though, and you should be sure you speak with a wrongful death attorney about what the cap means to your case.Getting Legal Help
Medical malpractice wrongful death claims are some of the most complex claims that exist because of the technical nature of malpractice claims and the high stakes of wrongful death litigation. It is essential for you to have top-notch legal representation.
The Boston wrongful death lawyers at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman offer free consultations. Learn more about how we can help you, get in touch with us today at (617) 367-2900 or contact us online.Wrongful Death Legal Help – (617) 367-2900 – Free Consultation