This article looks at the types of medical negligence claim you can make and how to go about it with your local medical negligence claim solicitor.
First of all, letâ€™s look at the different types of medical negligence claims there are, as you may well be surprised to find that there are more than you think.
Common Medical Negligence Claims
Some of the most common medical negligence claims are the accident at work or road traffic accident. These claims are often made when you believe that itâ€™s someone elseâ€™s fault that you were hurt, either by lack of prevention, undue care and attention or by not having the required medical assistance to hand as instructed by law. With an accident at work, all employers have a duty of care to follow which includes having steps to prevent accidents happening in the first instance in place and then having the correct procedure and equipment in place to deal quickly and efficiently with any injury caused. Obviously, this is such a large range of procedures depending on the type of work you are doing. A scaffolder, working at height has far more procedures to follow than a librarian for example as the risk of injury is much higher and more severe if something goes wrong.
In these types of claims, a good medical negligence lawyer will be able to find evidence that either the accident could have been prevented or that better care could have been taken of the victim. By studying specific sectors of employment, a legal negligence expert will be able to pick apart the nature of the accident and find out if there is negligence on the part of another party.
Motor Accidents for Pedestrians & Motorists
With regard to a motor vehicle accident, or indeed an accident as a pedestrian on a highway, a specialist road traffic accident solicitor will gather information from the emergency services as to the nature of the accident and this will help determine if there is any blame to be attributed to another party. This could be other drivers, incorrect or insufficient road signage, defective road surfacing or maintenance not carried out to the road surface by the local council, defective traffic lights, street-light failures etc. Police will often impound vehicles involved in accidents to check for defaults that may have caused or contributed to the accident. A specialist RTA or road traffic accident solicitor will act on your behalf to ensure that if any reason was a contributing factor in your injury, then it will be bought to light.
Medical Negligence claims often revolve around either incorrect diagnosis or failure to diagnose a particular ailment or mistakes made in the treatment of the patient, either in a hospital setting or by a local GP. Errors, of course, can be made by anyone at any time and where a medical professional is involved the outcome can be magnified because of the effect it has on the patient. Medical negligence claims and settlements are made based on the suffering that the individual, or on some occasions a group of people, have gone through and to a big extent the life-changing injuries they have to live with and in the worst-case scenarios if someone has passed away then a medical negligence lawyer can assess to see if there is a case to answer which can help surviving relatives.
Approaching a Medical Negligence Solicitor
When you approach a medical negligence solicitor, who by the way also deals with dental negligence claims, itâ€™s important to have as much information as possible to hand. We would suggest preparing an overview of all major relevant facts with dates and times to hand if possible. Contact details of all involved in the claim as well as any crime or police incident reports to back up the recollection of events. Images and video footage now with almost everyone having access to smartphones can become even more valuable to any investigation especially in the immediate aftermath of an incident. Items such as an accident at work record book if kept can also help to show if procedures have been followed. Make sure that all of your documents such as insurances, qualifications, licenses are all up to date and correct. An experienced medical negligence solicitor will mitigate any trivial matters like these before a defence barrister finds them out and uses them against you in any hearing. Although the main aim is a fair settlement against the accused you have to be prepared to go to court to back up the claims made.
Different types of medical negligence claims are situations such as Asbestosis, a crippling respiratory disease caused by the inhalation of asbestos fibres, which can only be detected years after the cause. Some cases are not picked up until 30 years after the disease has entered the body. A common fault here is the lack of protective equipment used years ago when serious sustained exposure to this deadly material was commonplace in certain types of factory setting such as shipbuilding, textile and cement industries. If you have symptoms of asbestosis then it may well be worth talking to your local medical negligence solicitor who has experience in this field as they may well have similar, successful, previous cases to draw upon.
So, in summary, a medical negligence lawyer or solicitor can cover a great variety of different claims and within one firm you may have as many as 30 differently qualified professionals to cover all the main types of medical negligence claims. From your side, as a claimant, itâ€™s important to be 100% truthful from the start and have as much evidence as you can get regarding your claim. Most medical negligence solicitors will offer a free initial consultation where the better you can put across your situation, backed up by evidence, could make the difference between the solicitor taking on your case or advising that you do not, unfortunately, have a claim.
Thompson & Co Personal Injury Solicitors has been providing specialist advice to members of the public in Personal injury, clinical negligence and related matters for over 20 years.