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How to File a Medical Malpractice Claim for Your Child

How to File a Medical Malpractice Claim for Your Child

No one ever wants to learn how to file a medical malpractice claim for their child. However, medical malpractice is real, and it destroys lives. Often, the only relief families can get is from the compensation they are due from the pediatric medical professionals responsible for causing harm.  

Do You Have a Claim? 

Before filing a medical malpractice claim on behalf of your child, you must first determine whether a valid claim exists. To accomplish this, you must meet with an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Initial consultations are free and well worth your time. 

A valid pediatric medical malpractice claim exists when a healthcare professional provides medical care or treatment in violation of accepted standards and norms of care.  

For example, if children should never be prescribed more than a certain dose of medication A, a doctor who does so is likely liable for pediatric malpractice. Likewise, a surgeon who performs a wrong-site surgery is also likely liable.  

It is important to remember that mistakes are not the same as medical malpractice. Everyone makes mistakes. However, certain mistakes are more careless and dangerous than others. These oversights demonstrate a departure from accepted standards of care, whereas a simple clerical error might not.  

How to File a Medical Malpractice Claim for Your Child 

If you have a valid case, you must follow certain steps for your claim to be successful. No matter your circumstances, finding the right medical malpractice attorney is key. 

Speak with a Medical Malpractice Attorney 

If your child has been injured by medical negligence, you are encouraged to find a firm that has experience with medical malpractice cases. At Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, we offer free consultations for new clients.  

If you are considering representing yourself or your child in a medical malpractice claim, you are strongly recommended not to do so.  

The medical and legal issues are far too complex for anyone without experience in these matters. You could potentially walk away with far less compensation for your child or none at all.  

Insurance companies work aggressively to limit medical malpractice payouts. Additionally, medical professionals’ attorneys battle hard against medical malpractice charges to protect their clients’ licenses and reputations. You need to be on equal or better footing by hiring a professional to advocate for your financial interests.  

Report the Incident to Authorities 

Negligent pediatric medical practitioners should be reported to the relevant state licensing board. By reporting your incident, you help prevent a negligent professional from causing further harm.  

Also, if the relevant state licensing board finds that the doctor or other medical professional was negligent, your case for compensation may benefit greatly from this finding.  

Obtain a Certificate of Merit 

The next step in filing a medical malpractice claim is obtaining a certificate of merit. This document certifies that your attorney has consulted with an appropriate medical expert who believes your case for pediatric malpractice has merit.  

While many may believe that a certificate of merit is proof of malpractice, it is not. It is evidence that a qualified licensed medical professional acknowledges that medical malpractice is likely to have occurred.  

In other words, it is not a game-winner, but it is a key that allows you to enter the compensation process. Eventually, the person you are alleging to be negligent will have medical professionals of their own to counter the certificate.  

File a Medical Malpractice Insurance Claim 

The right to sue for medical malpractice is granted in New York law. However, medical professionals have insurance to cover their legal liabilities.  

Insurance negotiations take the place of lawsuits. During these meetings, your pediatric malpractice attorney will vigorously pursue the maximum damages they feel appropriate for your losses.  

As you might imagine, not all negotiations bear satisfactory results. You might find the insurance company’s offer unacceptable, or the insurance company may be unwilling to pay what you demand. In either case, the next step would be mediation, arbitration, or a lawsuit. 

Arbitration, Mediation, Lawsuit 

Victims have the right to file a lawsuit and present their cases in court. However, before this, the options of mediation and arbitration may be explored. In fact, some healthcare providers, such as hospitals, require patients to sign a mandatory arbitration agreement for medical malpractice disputes.  

Mediation and arbitration can save much of the time and money needed for lawsuits. They can lead to effective and satisfactory solutions.  

However, some cases need a judge or jury to decide matters. These cases are far fewer than cases that settle out of court. That said, medical malpractice cases go to trial much more often than other types of personal injury cases, such as car accidents and slip and fall cases. 

Get Help from an Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorney Today 

At Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, we understand how devastating pediatric malpractice can be. Let our team review your case to determine the full extent of damages your child deserves and explain your options for moving forward. Contact us today for a free consultation.