In the State of Florida, medical malpractice ranges from a simple misdiagnosis that is easily corrected to a life-threatening surgical error. No matter what type of medical error occurs, it’s never good for the patient. The following are some of the areas of medicine where medical malpractice frequently occurs in Florida: Anesthesia Bariatric/Gastric Bypass Surgery Birth Injury/Labor and Delivery Cancer/Oncology Cardiology Cosmetic Surgery Emergency Medicine Errors in Diagnosis Medication Errors Ophthalmology Orthopedic Medicine Radiology Surgical Mistakes
If you are the victim of medical malpractice, you might be entitled to a legal settlement. However, the State of Florida has very unique and complicated medical malpractice laws. There are some concepts that you need to know: Arbitration – In Florida, judges are authorized-”although not required-”to refer cases to non-binding arbitration. A claimant or defendants refusal to go to an arbitrator can have an impact on the monetary awards should the case go to trial. Comparative Negligence – A legal concept where a party’s partial responsibility will proportionately lower the amount of damages awarded. Collateral Source Rule – Florida courts allow for claimant’s damages to be reduced if the claimant receives damage amounts from other sources. Damage Caps – The courts generally view punitive damage amounts greater than three times the amount of compensatory damages as excessive. This cap can be exceeded if the claimant can demonstrate why it’s not excessive. Immunities – The State of Florida, its counties and municipalities are not immune to compensatory damages. However, there are caps that apply to compensatory damages and those entities are immune from punitive damages. Periodic Payments – The courts are required to grant a request for periodic payments if future economic damages exceed $250,000. Statute of Limitations – Florida law requires that a medical malpractice incident be brought before the courts within two years of the date of the incident or within two years of the date that the incident was or should have been discovered. There are exceptions. For instance the cap can expand when it involves a young child or fraud was involved. A Florida medical malpractice attorney should be consulted for clarification. Vicarious Liability – This applies to the liability attached to hospitals that don’t exercise due care in the selection of their physicians. In other words, a hospital can be sued for a doctor’s or surgeon’s negligent act on their premises. Because of the Statute of Limitations, it benefits individuals seeking monetary damages for their surgical error or misdiagnosis to contact an experienced, qualified Florida medical malpractice attorney as early as possible. If you believe that a doctor, hospital, healthcare provider, or insurance company has damaged your health or impeded your recovery, contact the Gainesville law firm of Moody, Salzman and Lash at (352) 364-4071 to schedule a consultation. Our experienced attorneys are ready to serve medical malpractice victims in Alachua County and throughout the State of Florida.
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