J&Y Law provides powerful representation to medical malpractice and personal injury victims throughout California. While most doctors and medical professionals provide patients with the quality care they need and deserve, medical mistakes are not uncommon, unfortunately sometimes resulting in serious injuries and deaths. If you or a loved one has been harmed due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may be entitled to significant compensation.
Our medical malpractice lawyers have a proven ability to hold doctors, surgeons, hospitals and other medical professionals accountable for harming patients, whether through incompetence or negligence. When you become our client, we will help you pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit and fight tirelessly to protect your rights.
Because we understand your physical, emotional, and financial burdens, your initial consultation with us will be free and you will not pay any attorneys’ fees until we win compensation for you. Please contact our office today so we can get started on your medical malpractice case.
What is Medical Malpractice?
First, you do not have a valid medical malpractice claim if you are merely dissatisfied with the treatment you received, or even if you were injured because of a medical error.
Instead, our attorneys must be able to prove that you were injured because the medical care provided to you deviated from the appropriate standard of care — the type of care a reasonably skilled medical professional would have provided under the same circumstances.
In particular, medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional’s incompetence or negligence:
- Causes harm to a patient
- Makes the patient’s condition worse
- Causes unreasonable or unexpected complications
- Necessitates additional treatment
Finally, we must be able to show that the doctor’s negligence was the direct cause of your injury, resulting in actual damages, such as physical pain, disability, loss of income, medical expenses (past and future) and mental anguish.
How J&Y Can Help With Your California Medical Malpractice Claim
Our experienced medical malpractice lawyers have proven strategies for proving all the elements of negligence in a medical malpractice claim. Ultimately, a successful medical malpractice claim hinges on thorough pretrial preparation. At J&Y Law, we will leverage our skills and resources to conduct a far-reaching investigation.
By examining all the medical records, we will work to discover evidence of the medical negligence that caused your injuries. In addition, we will collaborate with respected medical experts to develop written statements and testimony showing that the treatment provided deviated from the accepted standard of care, which will prove invaluable during settlement negotiations or at trial. Above all, we will work tirelessly to help you recover the maximum compensation you deserve, inside or outside of the courtroom.
Common Malpractice Claims in California
While patients can be harmed by various types of negligence, some of the most common medical malpractice claims include:
Misdiagnosis and Failure to Diagnosis
Given that many illnesses share symptoms with other conditions, making the right diagnosis can be difficult. In any event, when a patient’s illness or injury is not accurately diagnosed, he or she will likely not receive adequate treatment and suffer further harm. Some commonly misdiagnosed conditions include:
- Heart attack
- Celiac disease
- Lyme disease
- Thyroid issues
- Pulmonary embolism
- Aortic dissection
At J&Y Law, we routinely rely on the testimony of medical experts to show how a reasonably skilled doctor would have made the correct or different diagnosis under the same circumstances to establish a medical professional’s liability for misdiagnosis and/or failure to diagnose.
Prescription errors frequently occur in California when:
- A patient is given the wrong drug or dosage
- A prescribed drug is improperly administered
- A patient is not made aware of the potential side effects of a treatment
Such injuries can ultimately result in serious injuries and even wrongful death. Depending on the circumstances, a number of medical professionals may be held liable for medical malpractice based on prescription error, including doctors, physician assistants, pharmacists, nurses, nurse practitioners, pharmacists and drug manufacturers.
A surgical error basically involves a preventable mistake that occurs during surgery, such as:
- Operating on the wrong body part/wrong side of the body
- Failing to close a bleeding vein or artery
- Puncturing a vital organ
- Leaving a foreign object inside a patient’s body (e.g. sponge, surgical instrument)
- Post-surgical complications (e.g. bleeding, infection)
While some surgical errors are the result of a surgeon’s mistake, poor preoperative planning and miscommunication are often cited as the leading causes of surgical errors. In any event, it takes a skilled California medical malpractice lawyer to hold the responsible parties accountable for surgical errors that result in patient harm.
Complications during labor or delivery that result in physical harm to the newborn are referred to as birth injuries. Various types of trauma associated with birth injuries include:
- Brachial plexus injuries (e.g. Erb’s Palsy)
- Cerebral palsy
- Cervical dystonia
- Shoulder dystocia
- Hypoxia (oxygen deprivation)
Birth injuries are frequently caused by improper use of medical devices or techniques (e.g forceps, vacuum pump) and other delivery room errors. While it is unlikely that a medical malpractice award will reverse a birth injury, it will provide the family with vital resources to ensure all the child’s future medical and financial needs are met.
Anesthesia can be especially dangerous or even fatal if it is improperly administered. Anesthesia errors can occur when the anesthesiologist:
- Fails to thoroughly review the patient’s medical history
- Prescribes anesthesia that causes an allergic reaction
- Administers too much or too little anesthesia
- Fails to monitor the patient’s vital signs
- Improperly intubates the patient
A number of parties can be held liable for medical malpractice due to anesthesia errors, including the hospital, the anesthesiologist, as well as the manufacturer of anesthesia equipment that proves to be defective.
Medical Malpractice Claims in California: What You Need To Know
There are a number of legal requirements governing medical malpractice claims, including:
Statute of Limitations
A medical malpractice claim must be brought within one year after you discover or through the use of reasonable diligence should have discovered your injury.
This means that:
- You must file your lawsuit within 1 year of discovering you were harmed by a medical professional’s negligence
- If you do not discover your injury until more than 3 years have passed since the negligence occurred, you lose the right to file a lawsuit.
There is an exception to the 3-year discovery rule if a foreign object was left inside your body, however.
In addition, if the medical malpractice victim is a minor child, the claim must be filed within 3 years of the date the injury occurred, unless the victim is under 6 years of age, in which case, the claim must be filed within 3 years of his or her eighth birthday, whichever period is longer.
Finally, you must notify all potential defendants in a medical malpractice action of your intent to file a claim at least 90 days before filing a complaint with the court. The sooner you contact the medical malpractice lawyers at J&Y, the sooner we can get started in your claim.
Damages Caps in California Malpractice Cases
Depending on the circumstances, compensation awarded in a medical malpractice lawsuit includes economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages will cover your financial losses such as past and future medical expenses and lost wages, while non-economic damages are intended to compensate you for pain and suffering, physical disfigurement, and impairment.
Under California law, there is no cap on economic damages; however, non-economic damages are limited or “capped” at $250,000.
Expert Witness Reporting and Testimony
You must provide the testimony of a medical expert to prove that your doctor (or another medical professional) failed to provide the requisite standard of care. Under California law, a qualified expert is a person who has sufficient knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education on the subject to which their testimony relates. In other words, if you had a heart attack that was misdiagnosed, a reasonably skilled cardiologist would qualify an expert.
Contact Our Experienced Los Angeles Medical Malpractice Lawyers
At J&Y Law, we have a well-earned reputation as a dedicated team of advocates that provides our clients with trustworthy advice and caring, efficient service. If you or a loved one has been injured due to medical malpractice, we will fight to help you win just compensation. If a medical professional’s negligence was the cause of your loved one’s death, we can help you find justice through a wrongful death lawsuit based on medical malpractice.
Although healthcare providers, their attorneys and insurance companies often attempt to deny liability for injuries and deaths arising from medical malpractice, we know how to hold them accountable. We have recovered millions of dollars in settlements and jury awards on behalf of our clients.
When you partner with J&Y Law, our experienced medical malpractice attorneys will be personally involved in your claim and will stand by you every step of the way. Please contact our office today for a free evaluation of your case.