You don’t have to be a medical practitioner or attorney to understand that cases involving medical malpractices are often complicated. For you to win a case, you not only need a thorough understanding of the law but a general knowledge of the medical practice. You require medical malpractice experts witness and a medical expert witness to testify for you to convince the jury that indeed the physician made a mistake that harmed you. Again, discovery has to be done, meaning the doctor and other involved medical professionals have to be interviewed. In most cases, doctors will be accompanied by their lawyers. As such, it’s important that you have a lawyer too.
Finding a Lawyer
The first step to finding a medical malpractice lawyer is to contact your local bar association. Lawyers.com may also help you find a list of attorneys specializing in all kinds of law. Contact a few attorneys to determine your best fit. Probably, your first contact with the lawyer is over the phone. However, some attorneys like meeting their clients face-to-face. Either way, get prepared to ask some questions about their practice. You are looking to hire a lawyer, not making the first date, so don’t be shy. Ask the following questions before committing to your decision:
• Ask the attorney whether is a member of the Canadian bar association. Don’t forget to ask if they are on any of the bar’s committees or panels. Again, it is important to know if the attorney ever had disciplinary conflicts with a bar association
• How much will be the legal fee? Will the attorney charge on a contingency fee basis or an hourly rate? It is also important to know whether you will pay legal fee or any costs of suit in case you lose the case
• Ask how many medical malpractice cases has the lawyer handled in the past. You may also check references at the local courthouse or search on the internet
Shortly after discussing with the attorney, they will decide whether or not to take your case. If the lawyer agrees to take it, you will have to schedule another meeting. Gather all documents related to your case before the next meeting. Get prepared to sign a release allowing your lawyer to access your medical records.
Medical malpractice cases can take years, if not months to complete. Your lawyer will always update you on any hearings you have to attend. Between the time of filing the case and actual trial, your lawyer and the other party can discuss settling the case. However, your lawyer must get your permission before accepting or rejecting any settlement offer. Even though your attorney could advise you, it’s your right to decide whether or not to take a settlement offer.