What Is the First Step in Pursuing a Medical Malpractice Claim in Florida?
If someone has been harmed or injured due to medical malpractice in Florida, they may want to pursue a medical malpractice claim. This can be a time consuming and lengthy process. However, most individuals find receiving compensation for their damages to be worth the effort.
The first step in pursuing a medical malpractice claim is to determine whether it would be eligible for damages. If so, you will need to gather your evidence to prove your case.
Understanding how a medical malpractice lawsuit works is critical if you want to increase your chances of having a successful case. Keep reading to learn the basics of filing a malpractice lawsuit.
Know How Long You Have to File a Malpractice Claim
Most states have a statute of limitations. This is a time frame in which an individual has to file a medical malpractice claim. After the time period has elapsed, the individual is no longer eligible to pursue damages for their case.
Every state is different when it comes to the statute of limitations. According to the 2019 Florida statutes, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury case.
If you have been injured and you want to pursue a case against the negligent party, the sooner you consult with an attorney, the better. To get the maximum possible settlement, you need to begin documenting your evidence right away.
Determine Whether Negligence or Poor Medical Treatment Occurred
In order to have a justified case, an individual must be able to prove that some sort of negligence or poor medical treatment occurred and that there is a medical entity liable for the damages. If negligence cannot be proved, the case will likely not hold up in a court of law.
Many legal entities will provide a free consultation to determine whether you have a case worth pursuing further. Be sure to bring as much documentation and proof as possible when you meet with the lawyer so that they have a good idea of what the case entails.
Gather Documentation Supporting Your Case
Gathering “the five Ws” will help support your case and give your lawyer a solid foundation on which to build your medical malpractice claim. The five Ws are as follows:
- WHO was involved in the case?
- WHAT damages are you hoping to recover?
- WHERE did the act of negligence take place?
- WHEN did the act of negligence occur?
- HOW did the injury happen?
If you can prove the answers to these questions with supporting evidence, you will have a strong case. Your attorney will help you find the evidence you need.
Comply With State Regulations and Requirements
Florida medical malpractice and the statute of limitations is fairly straightforward. In most cases, you have two years from the date of the incident to file a lawsuit. State regulations also require you to have expert support from a medical professional stating that malpractice occurred.
States like Florida have set regulations in place for individuals seeking to file medical malpractice cases. The goal of these regulations is to streamline litigation, encourage settlement, and ensure that the case is legitimate.
If you are unsure of the legal regulations for your state, be sure to consult with a legal professional. A medical malpractice lawyer can answer your questions and evaluate your case. Most attorneys offer free, confidential initial consultations.