When something goes wrong to you or a loved one medically, it can feel devastating. You start to wonder, can you sue your medical insurance company? Going into a medical facility, which was supposed to take care of your or them and leaving worse for the experience is terrible. It can also seem like you have no other options. In the case that someone dies from medical malpractice or another issue. Oftentimes, you just want to move on and try to regroup as a family, but that lets someone off the hook for the fault in this injury or death. The fallout, in that case, falls entirely on the family, which should never happen. That’s why it’s important to take a medical company to court when you’re justified in doing so.
Of course, this is more difficult than it sounds. Medical companies tend to make it difficult to bring a lawsuit against them, and they will hide behind high-priced lawyers who specialize in this field. Can you sue your medical insurance company? That’s part of why it’s incredibly important to go about everything as precisely as is possible. This way you can be sure to go about the steps of suing a medical company as precisely as possible while fighting back with the best possible lawyers for your case.
This is not a simple process. However, if you follow the steps to successfully take a medical company to court, you should be in a good shape. If you overlook or try to skip steps, then you may start running into more important issues.
Determine If You Have a Case
The first and most important thing that you have to do in order to be able to tell if you can successfully take a medical company to court over negligence or some other form of malpractice is to determine whether you actually have a case against the company. If you do, then you can proceed. If not, then the lawsuit is a non-starter that you won’t be able to win on.
First, you need to be able to prove that there was a doctor-patient relationship between two people. For instance, if your neighbor is a doctor and you ask them for advice, then they give you quick advice that goes poorly, there really isn’t a doctor-patient relationship. However, if you set an appointment with them, go to their office, and they examine you before giving that advice, then you have established that relationship. In short, you hired the medical caregiver and they agreed to give you medical treatment of a certain kind. This has some flexibility. For instance, a nurse hired to give elderly care is responsible as well. Having something signed by a notary that proves your case can help you a lot in this regard. Can you sue your medical insurance company?
The next thing to prove is that the doctor was negligent in some way. This is notably more difficult to prove than that the two of you had a relationship. After all, being a doctor is difficult and often involves a high-pressure situation. Humans, meanwhile, are fickle. For instance, if you have a poor reaction to anesthesia, that is not inherently the administering anesthesiologist’s fault. However, if they gave you too high of a dosage of it, then there is a good reason to bring a lawsuit forward. In short, a doctor is allowed to make a mistake. They don’t have to be an elite or flawless doctor. However, they should be operating at a reasonably skillful and careful level. Now, there is room for interpretation there, which is why you will probably need at least one medical expert to testify on your behalf.
After that, you have to prove that the doctor’s negligence caused you to be injured. For instance, if your doctor was clearly negligent, say showing up to work intoxicated, but you weren’t affected by this fact, then you don’t have a case. Someone else might, but that doctor would have had to injure or cause them harm in some way. This, like the relationship between a doctor and a patient, is generally fairly easy to prove. Either death or injury occurred, or it didn’t. There should be a clear medical record of the issues that it caused. Meanwhile, the standard of proof to this level of a malpractice lawsuit is more probable than not that the negligence led to this specific bit of harm. This is true of many lawsuits. For instance, if someone dies in a fire where it’s proven that the fire sprinkler companies involved didn’t institute a recall for a broken product, then the connection is clear.
Finally, you’re going to need to be able to prove that some kind of damages occurred to you because of the injury. Did mental damage occur? Can you sue your medical insurance company? A therapy session, or series of therapy sessions following the event might prove this, but it’s not easy to do. More practically, showing financial issues relating to the incident is where the baseline of the damages occurs at. These include lost income from the injury, where you may have been unable to work. That’s pretty common in a workers compensation settlement, which is directed at a company who someone works for and not the medical company, but relies on the same idea that because you can’t work and are losing income, that should be covered by the responsible party. Keeping the rate of physiatry physician employment high is also important, as showing you need physical therapy can help with this process. Furthermore, covering the cost of medical bills is common, as why should the victim of neglect pay out of pocket to become a victim?
Once you’re able to prove these four things, then you’ll be able to move forward with your lawsuit, to the next step of trying to succeed in challenging a medical company.
Hire a Respected and Experiences Lawyer
When you challenge a powerful company, you need to expect that they’re going to have a powerful lawyer, or more accurately a team of lawyers. Of course, this is true of anyone powerful, as they hide behind attorneys like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons. Can you sue your medical insurance company? Luckily, there are always going to be lawyers who want to challenge these types of companies. Antitrust attorneys are a great examples of this. Another great example is a nursing home abuse attorney. They may even be able to help you to some extent, depending on the exact nature of your case.
However, you want to find a lawyer with a lot of extensive experience fighting medical companies. You want one with a high success rate, who the medical companies are aware of and relatively nervous to go up against because of their reputation.
If you’re not connected to anyone in the legal industry, finding this person may seem difficult or overwhelming in and of itself. Can you sue your medical insurance company? However, if you take your time and do your research, this is a fairly manageable step. This type of lawyer makes a portion of money based on how much you won. This means that the more clients they take and the more clients who win, the more money they make. So, they need to be fairly visible, and will probably not be shy about advertising in your community. This reality of the industry also means that they won’t take your case unless they’re certain they can win, or they’ll end up working for free. So, if lawyers are willing to take your case is a good indicator of whether you have a solid case or not. Try searching through online reviews as a starting point to finding the right lawyer.
There Are Some Special Requirements of a Medical Malpractice Case
Due to the nature of medical malpractice lawsuits, there are a few special rules that encompass a lawsuit, which you must follow. The first of which is that the case must be brought soon after the injury or death has occurred. This can be difficult for a lot of people, as they are often still recovering both mentally and physically from the damages when they need to go to a lawyer over the case. This length of time does vary by the state that you’re in, as different states have a different statute of limitations on this type of case, though. Can you sue your medical insurance company? It could be as long as two years, but it could also be as short as six months after the injury. For many people, this isn’t a lot of time to react. Without fitting the legal timeframe, it could get thrown out, even if the suit was justified. So, it’s best to go out and begin the process as soon as possible, no matter how difficult that may be.
The case must also go before a special medical malpractice panel for review. This is often a state requirement, and it is done to make sure that malpractice has occurred. The idea is that medical malpractice is difficult to determine. For instance, it’s common to sue over an improper diagnosis. The average court doesn’t have the skillset to determine if this was a reasonable mistake or not. The court has the ability to determine how much damage that did, but you can’t get to that stage without determining if there is fault on the shoulders of the doctor. So, the experts should be able to make that decision, based on the facts of the case, thus giving an expert decision to that stage of the lawsuit. It should also be noted that this does not equal a ruling in the case. Rather, it’s a ruling towards the validity of evidence that you’re looking to use in the case.
Other states will also require that you inform a doctor of the case that you’re bringing against them, before the case is filed. Can you sue your medical insurance company? This is a point of procedure and is something your lawyer will be able to take care of relatively easily. In states where you have not gone in front of a review board, you are going to have to find the testimony of an expert to prove negligence and the direct correlation between the negligence and injury or death. This is, again, because you need to offer proof to a court that what you’re claiming is true, as they don’t have the ability to determine that themselves.
Furthermore, it’s worth pointing out and being aware of that some states limit the amount that you can be awarded for damages. The idea being to cap people who are looking to over claim damages.
If you have a solid case to prove medical malpractice, it’s likely that it won’t even go to court. Instead, they will look to settle with you, often for large amounts of money, out of court. What they’re saying when they make an offer like this is that they were in fact negligent. That they do owe you compensation of some kind. They’re also saying that they want to avoid a trial, which is long and expensive. That trial could easily cost them more than it’s worth to defend themselves while ending in them having to pay out more money and be noted for that malpractice on the record. In a payout, they can also make a legal argument that they’re not admitting fault, even though that’s what it means between the lines. Assuming you’ve taken the steps necessary, and get to this point, it will then be up to you to either accept this settlement or push forward with the lawsuit. Most people find accepting the settlement, and ending the battle is the best way to move forward.
Many people tend to look at this kind of lawsuit as being a fight between the powerful and the weak, as one side is more closely associated with offshore private wealth management, while the other deals with bankruptcy agencies. Don’t let this intimidate you, though, as there are people on your side to win the lawsuit.