Long Island Negligence Attorneys Skilled in Representing Injured Individuals

The medical malpractice lawyers at Duffy & Duffy have spent decades helping disability patients on Long Island with medical negligence and beyond who have been harmed by negligent health care professionals. We focus our practice on personal injury & legal malpractice cases and are determined to pursue the full legal remedies to which you may be entitled due to negligence. That includes taking the time to understand each client’s unique health circumstances and needs, as well as fighting aggressively in court to ensure that their rights are protected. Our track record includes well over 70 multi-million dollar settlements in medical malpractice cases from those who deviate from the normal course of treatment.

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Proving a Medical Malpractice Claim & Negligence

If you or a loved one has been hurt as a result of improper medical care from a doctor or from medical negligence, you may have the right to sue for damages due to an injury caused by medical negligence or other legal relief. That may include money for additional doctors’ bills related to the injury, lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress due to recklessness. In some especially egregious medical negligence situations, courts also will award punitive damages to punish a medical or healthcare professional for intentionally causing harm to a patient. New York does not have a cap on the maximum amount of damages that a patient can be awarded in these personal injury cases or medical negligence lawsuits.

Medical malpractice is a type of negligence that occurs when a health care professional or doctor fails to meet what the law or ethics referred to as a “standard of care.” In ordinary negligence cases or lawsuits, the standard of care is typically that which would be expected from a typical healthcare provider. In medical malpractice cases, by contrast, the standard of care is elevated based on the training and expertise of the physician or health professionals tasked with providing treatment. Doctors, medical students, nurses, and other medical service staff in this industry are expected to exercise the judgment of competent healthcare professionals in the same medical community, based on circumstances like the patient’s age and health. This can be a complicated legal & ethical issue, and it usually involves expert medical negligence witness testimony to establish the level of legal care required and to prove whether or not a person being sued for malpractice met the standard or is guilty of deviating from the standard of care.

In New York law, these cases are typically subject to a two-and-a-half-year statute of limitations for medical negligence. That generally means that a patient injured as a result of medical malpractice has two and a half years from the time of the harm to sue for negligence. In some cases where the patient receives continuing treatment from a negligent physician or medical professional, the clock starts running at the end of that treatment. A person who sues after the legal limit expires is likely to have his or her case dismissed in court. This is one of many reasons why it is important to consult an experienced medical negligence lawyer as soon as possible if you may have been hurt by a doctor’s careless actions or medical malpractice.

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Seek Advice on Your Negligence Case from a Long Island Lawyer

At Duffy & Duffy, our lawyers are accomplished medical malpractice attorneys and professional staff who understand the complex legal issues that often come up in medical negligence and other personal injury cases. We have a strong reputation in the local medical and legal communities for providing comprehensive law services and fighting tirelessly for the injured patients whom we represent in a court of law.

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of malpractice or recklessness by a Long Island medical professional, you can contact the medical negligence attorneys at Duffy & Duffy. Conveniently located in Uniondale, we proudly serve clients in Nassau and Suffolk Counties as well as the Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, and Manhattan as well as other areas of New York. Contact us or call us at (516) 394-4200 for a free consultation about your medical negligence case.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) maintains a database of physicians, including information on their licensing and any legal action taken against them. You can also check with the New York Department of Health for any public information on doctors you may have questions about.

One study found that approximately 58% of hospitalizations experienced at least one medical error during the time they were in the hospital. While many resulted in no harm to the patient, some had serious adverse effects on the patient’s health. Source

One study found that approximately 58% of hospitalizations experienced at least one medical error during the time they were in the hospital. While many resulted in no harm to the patient, some had serious adverse effects on the patient’s health. Source

A medical malpractice suit can be brought against any medical professional or healthcare provider who causes harm as a result of negligence, misconduct, or errors or omissions. This includes doctors, nurses, orderlies, lab technicians, hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities, among others.

To begin a medical malpractice suit in New York, you must first file a complaint in the appropriate court, and deliver a copy of the summons and complaint to the named defendants in your suit. Your lawsuit must typically be filed within 30 months of the alleged act of medical malpractice, unless you reasonably could not have discovered the malpractice before that point (such as in cases of cancer misdiagnosis).

What is Medical Negligence and the Law?

Medical negligence occurs when a medical professional, such as a doctor, nurse, or a surgeon provides medical care or treatment to the patient in a way that deviates from the accepted standard of care causing unneeded risks. If you believe that the hospital or public health staff may be at fault then you need to consult a medical lawyer. At Duffy & Duffy, our medical negligence legal team uses extensive resources and years of experience in pursuit of a resolution of your medical malpractice lawsuit.

Listed below are a few important things to know about healthcare and medical negligence:

  • There are a myriad of ways that doctor or physician negligence may take place. Common examples include failure to properly diagnose the patient’s condition(myocardial infarction for example) during a medical examination, failure to offer timely treatment, mistakes during administration of anesthesia, errors during surgery and issuance of a wrong prescription drug to a patient. It is often difficult to pinpoint the exact diagnosis when seeing a patient for the first time for treatment. Doctors need to review prior health and medical records, take a thorough medical history from the patient and order tests. It is during these times that a legal malpractice complaint of the patient might go unnoticed or the doctor may fail to order further testing if the original tests come back inconclusive. Duffy & Duffy has represented many cases such as these and will conduct a thorough investigation to determine why the client’s condition went undiagnosed and medical negligence.
  • Medical negligence is not the same as medical malpractice since the former need not result in injury or health condition to the patient. The injury needs to be such that the patient can seek compensation in civil court for pain and suffering, loss of services and/or economic damages caused by the doctor’s malpractice.
  • Doctor’s action must deviate from the accepted standard of care or medical ethics. In New York, the standard of care is measured against other doctors and physicians practicing in the same specialty as the negligent doctor. The accepted standard of health and medical care is usually the knowledge concerning the particular condition that patient has which has accumulated over years and years of research, testing and treatment of other patients in a similar surrounding. It is important to understand that not every medical care mistake leads to a bad outcome, as well as that not all medical negligence outcomes result from someone’s mistake. If you believe that you or your family member has suffered from medical malpractice from a healthcare professional, you should consult with the negligence attorneys at Duffy & Duffy to make sure your patient rights are protected.
  • Medical negligence from a health care professional and doctors can be established by an opinion of an expert witness practicing in the same area of specialty as the defendant doctor in a court of law. If misdiagnosis is alleged, the expert would be in the best position to testify as to what procedures, testing and treatment should have been performed under the circumstances, but wasn’t. The firm of Duffy & Duffy works with highly qualified experts who can review the records of the client and opinion as to whether there can be a case against the medical professional. Furthermore, in New York a medical negligence attorney cannot commence an action for medical malpractice without attaching what’s called a Certificate of Merit to the summons and complaint filed in the court which states that the attorney consulted with a physician and has reasons to believe that the lawsuit is viable.

Proving Medical Negligence in New York

There are four critical ways that legal attorneys prove medical negligence in malpractice cases. These are the validation of a doctor-patient relationship, a demonstration of negligent doctor actions, verification of the connection between doctor’s negligence and the injury caused to the patient, and the illustration of the links between the injury and specific damages. Medical negligence caused by doctors or your healthcare provider can have devastating impacts on not only the patient who suffered, but their family members who might struggle helping to care for the impacts of the negligence as well as trying to meet financial needs while the patient is unable to work due to recklessness.

Establishing the Doctor-Patient Relationship Ethics

First, in order to prove medical negligence from a doctor or healthcare provider, the attorney must prove that a doctor and patient relationship existed. Considering all the various factors in a malpractice suit in any court case, this is probably the easiest part of the case to prove. The doctor must be in some way related to your medical care and you must be able to produce proof of this relationship for the lawsuit. In order for this to be established, it’s a common standard that the physician has treated you directly. Your medical records can help to serve as proof in this capacity.

Demonstrating the Doctor was Negligent in a Court of Law

Second, our Long Island medical malpractice lawyers must demonstrate that the doctor or healthcare provider was negligent. The definition of malpractice and medical negligence is rather wide and case-dependent, but some basics must be present in all situations. For example, the standard is compared to what an average medical professional would have done when faced with the same factors. As a patient, you must be able to illustrate that a competent doctor and other physicians would have acted differently in your case. This gets to the crux of medical malpractice claims and can make or break your success with regard to settlements or judgments. This doesn’t mean that the doctor’s care must be deemed the “best”, but rather that it was reasonable and careful action taken that would be in line with a customary standard of care. Not being satisfied with your results is not enough if a similar doctor would have acted the same way.

Showing the Negligence Caused an Injury For a Lawsuit

Third, the doctor’s negligence must have caused the injury. This becomes a complex medical negligence situation if the patient was already sick or injured in some way prior to the doctor’s involvement. You must be able to demonstrate that the injuries and damages relate directly to the doctor’s negligence and legal malpractice with that particular patient. The burden of proof here is on the patient, and generally this requires the involvement of another medical professional, providing expert testimony. It’s important to maintain documentation of all information in order to be able to link the exact issues to medical negligence.

Demonstrating the Negligence Caused Damage or Injury

Finally, the doctor’s negligence must have led to an injury that caused specific damages due to recklessness or negligence. A doctor might perform below expectations and medical standards, but the patient must actually suffer at the hands of this negligence. Some of the examples of this are wages and time for lost work, physical pain and suffering, and the mental impact of the injuries.

In order to prove medical negligence, medical malpractice attorneys will be responsible for demonstrating all four factors listed above. The attorney’s ability to illustrate these factors of medical negligence will directly connect to the success of your case for damages and liability.

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Contact Us to Discuss Your Medical Negligence Case

Call the Long Island medical malpractice attorneys at Duffy & Duffy to discuss the details of your medical negligence case. We will listen, look at the facts of your case, and determine whether we can help you recover damages for the injuries you or a loved one suffered. Due to the statute of limitations, claims are only available for a limited time, after which the law prevents you from making a claim. Call us today.

Call Duffy & Duffy at (516) 394-4200 for a free consultation. We New York malpractice lawyers at Duffy & Duffy understand what impact a medical mistake can have on the victim’s life and will fight hard for just compensation.