New York Medical Malpractice Laws

In our hospitals and medical facilities, injuries do happen, and at times, it’s difficult to control them. However, some injuries are not accidental. They occur due to judgmental errors and the misconduct of medical professionals.

When this is the case, you have the legal grounds to file a complaint. In New York, injuries resulting from medical malpractice should be reported and the offender charged. The New York medical malpractice laws are a little elaborate, and not many laypersons understand them. Below is a breakdown of the basics of the laws.

What Do the Laws Signify?

Generally, medical malpractice refers to a situation where a medical practitioner violates the conduct of medical care and the action results in an injury or illness for a patient. Typically, the medics operate under a standard of care.

Each patient should be handled differently depending on their condition. In case where the doctor breaches the care standards, the action is viewed as a violation of the New York Medical Malpractice Statutes. As an offended party, you have to prove in court that it was the conduct of the doctor that contributed to the injury suffered by you or a member of your family.

Often, your New York medical malpractice attorney will rely on the service and testimony of an expert medical witness. In a situation where a woman in New York goes into labor, the occurrence of an injury is possible. This is because at times newborns suffer birth complications that the medics cannot control. However, if the injuries suffered are due to the doctors’ ignorance or carelessness, then you can sue them. To build a strong case, you will be required to consult a gynecologist and get insights on what to add to your testimony.

Is There a Time Limit to File the Claim?

There is a statute of limitation that defines how long an injured person should wait before filing a medical malpractice report. The New York medical malpractice laws give you two and a half years to file a malpractice claim.

The statute comes into effect as soon as the injury is suffered. You start counting from the day that you suffered the misfortune. You can also start counting from the end of the perpetual treatment plan.

The statute gives you sufficient time to gather quality evidence to back your case. In situations where a doctor leaves a foreign object inside your body, you enjoy an open period to file the claim. This means that you can bring the case forward at any time of the year that the object is found. As soon as the foreign material is discovered, it’s wise to consult a medical malpractice lawyer and have the expert defend you in court. The sooner you initiate the legal process, the better it is for your claim.

What Damages Are Covered by the Laws?

Normally, different states have laws that limit how much the injured patients can claim from the sued medical practitioners. What you get as compensation is what are called damages.

In New York, there are three common damages: compensatory, non-economic, and punitive damages. The compensatory damages are meant to compensate injured persons for issues such as wage losses and medical costs. The non-economic damages cover pain and all suffering that the injured person has gone through since the misfortune. Lastly, the punitive damages are payment given after the accused medic is proven to have participated in fraud or malice.

The Bottom Line

As a New Yorker, it’s wise to understand the laws of the state. Knowing the New York medical malpractice laws can help you take the necessary actions when you or people close to you suffer an injury that is deliberately caused.