When people need medical care, they often place their trust and well-being in the hands of doctors, surgeons, hospitals, and other medical professionals. At times, however, errors and accidents during medical exams and procedures lead to injuries which may be the basis for a medical malpractice lawsuit. Because of the complexities associated with these cases, however, it is crucial to have proper legal representation. Since 1985, the attorneys of Scaffidi & Associates has been fighting for medical malpractice victims and their families in the greater New York area. We believe that no one should suffer due to medical negligence, and dedicate ourselves to holding responsible parties accountable. If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence of a healthcare provider, our highly-skilled attorneys will work tirelessly to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
What is Medical Malpractice?
It is important to note that a lawsuit cannot be filed merely because a patient was not satisfied with the medical treatment he or she received. Similarly, not all acts of medical negligence lead to injuries, which means that there is no basis for a claim. In short, medical malpractice occurs when the negligence of a doctor, hospital, or other medical professional causes injury to a patient, makes the condition worse, causes unreasonable or unexpected complications, or necessitates additional treatment. In order to have a valid claim, it is necessary to show that the doctor or healthcare professional failed to provide the appropriate standard of care and, as a result, caused the patient harm. This is the type of care that a reasonably prudent physician would have provided under the same circumstances. A valid claim also requires showing that the doctor’s negligence or incompetence directly caused the injury. Additionally, the injury must have led to specific damages. This means that the patient must show that the injury that was caused by the defendant’s negligence resulted in damages such as physical pain, disability, loss of income, mental anguish, past and future medical expenses, future suffering, and hardship, that would otherwise not have occurred but for the negligence of the defendant. Finally, before a lawsuit can be filed in New York, it is necessary to obtain a doctor’s opinion that there is a reasonable basis to bring the lawsuit.
Causes of Medical Malpractice
Malpractice may be the result of various negligent acts, including:
In New York, doctors and other healthcare providers are required to inform patients of the potential risks, benefits, and alternatives to any treatment, surgery, or other medical procedure. It is also necessary to obtain the patient’s written permission to proceed. This is known as “informed consent.” A doctor who fails to obtain the patient’s informed consent and causes an injury can be held liable.
How long do I have to file a lawsuit?
If you were injured because of a medical professional’s negligence, you must file a claim within 2½ years from the date of the injury. This is known as the statute of limitations. If the injury occurred in a hospital or facility operated by the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation, you must also file a notice of claim within 90 days of the alleged injury before filing a lawsuit. There are also special, shortened, time limitations for cases against Federal and State-run medical facilities and their doctors and staff. For cases involving a failure to diagnose cancer, Laverne’s Law extends the statute of limitations in certain instances to 2½ years from when you knew or reasonably should have known of the misdiagnosis, but in no event longer than seven (7) years from the date of the misdiagnosis. Finally, if the injury was caused by a foreign object left in the body, such as sponges or scissors, a claim must be filed within one year of the date that the object was found, or should have been found, whichever comes first.
What kind of damages can I recover in a medical malpractice lawsuit?
Compensatory Damages – Covers past and future medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, and other economic losses.
Non-economic Damages – Compensation for pain and suffering, loss of use or impairment of a body part, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Punitive Damages – Awarded in rare cases when it can be shown that a medical professional acted recklessly, maliciously or fraudulently.
Experienced New York City Lawyers
At Scaffidi & Associates, we are keenly aware that medical malpractice cases are complicated. Over our many decades of practice, we have seen how doctors and other healthcare providers often seek to deny any liability or settle claims for as little money as possible. We have the knowledge, skills, and resources that are necessary for pursuing successful claims. Roy Scaffidi, and the team at Scaffidi & Associates, have developed a reputation as one of the premier medical malpractice firms in New York State. Mr. Scaffidi’s knowledge of medicine has often been noted to surpass that of the doctors that he cross-examines at trial, and his trial skills are among the elite in the state of New York. The firm’s hard work, dedication, and medical knowledge have earned them repeated recognition by The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers, Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers, Best Law Firms by US News, Martindale Hubbell Preeminent rating for the highest level of professional excellence and ethical standing, the American Board of Trial Advocates, and Lawyers of Distinction. Perhaps even more telling are the many personal referrals the firm receives from the lawyers representing medical professionals. Our legal team will conduct a thorough investigation by obtaining and evaluating all the relevant medical records to discover evidence of negligence. We also routinely collaborate with a respected network of medical experts to provide testimony that will support a claim. Although many malpractice cases can be resolved through an intricate negotiation, our highly adept trial attorneys have a proven track record of achieving successful outcomes in the courts. If you or a loved one has been injured due to medical negligence, we will provide you with aggressive legal representation. If the medical provider’s negligence caused or contributed to the patient’s death, surviving family members may be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit. We know that being injured by the negligence of a doctor, hospital, or another healthcare provider can be an overwhelming experience and we are here to lift that burden. Call our office today for a free consultation or complete the contact form on our website.
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Contact Us About Your Case
We encourage you to take the time to explore this website as the information provided here will answer many of your questions. We believe that an educated client is our best client. We are also readily available to discuss your case in confidence. Regardless of the issue you are facing, we are uniquely qualified to provide you with exceptional legal representation and personal service. Call our office or complete the contact form on our website to set up a consultation.