As many as 200,000 deaths take place every year as a result of medical accidents. That number, for many, represents a horrifying reality. Unfortunately a good number of these deaths involve negligent care, misdiagnosis and other substandard health care issues that cause complaints leading to medical board investigation and malpractice claims.
When we approach doctors, nurses, and surgeons our hope is to leverage their knowledge to help us improve our well-being. Unfortunately, that’s not always what ends up happening.
If you or somebody you know has suffered due to the negligence of sub-par care provided by a medical institution, you may be seeking out a medical malpractice attorney to help find you compensation for your losses.
Since the process of finding the best medical malpractice lawyers can be cumbersome, our team has put together a brief list below that should aid in your ability to find the perfect attorney.
1. Leverage Online Lawyer Finding Tools
When it comes to finding qualified attorneys, leveraging the internet is your best friend. The only issue is that there are a virtually unlimited amount of platforms out there that claim to be useful when hunting down quality legal services.
Our recommendation is to use our tools at Halt.org which specializes solely in matching clients to legal professionals that are especially qualified to take on their cases.
There are thousands of attorneys listed in our directory right now, so search with confidence to dig up some potential leads!
2. Get an Estimate of How Long Your Case Might Take
Depending on the complexity of your case and the existing caseload of the best malpractice lawyer you’re thinking of taking on, the amount of time it will take before you get your settlement can vary.
While it can be difficult to put a specific timetable to how long you can expect before your case is settled, getting an estimate from your attorney can be helpful in deciding whether or not to do business with them.
Attorneys should be able to give you a ballpark estimate on how long it will take for your case to be resolved based on dealing with similar cases. Any lawyer who is unwilling to give you an estimate may not be worth hiring.
3. Ask If You’ll Be Required to Accept a Settlement
It many cases, attorneys are interested in settling your case out of court as quickly as possible. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Settling quickly means you and them getting paid as soon as possible. It also means that you can avoid the uncertainty that surrounds a trial.
Still, you may be presented with a settlement offer that you’re not willing to accept. If that occurs, will your attorney yield to your wishes?
Understanding whether or not your attorney is willing to go to court if you find settlements to be sub-standard is important before bringing them on.
4. Assess Experience with Medical Malpractice Cases
By this point, you should have a shortlist of medical malpractice attorneys you’re open to working with. The next step in your process of hiring the right one will be to interview them.
You can either go straight to booking an appointment to meet your prospective attorney in-person or conduct a pre-interview over the phone.
No matter how you talk to your attorney, be sure to have them describe their experience dealing with cases like yours. Malpractice attorneys should be well versed in the medical field and should have extensive experience winning cases similar to the one you’re attempting to win.
If your attorney seems unconfident in their ability to win your case, keep searching.
Patients should understand their rights. Well, how is a patient to know if the person handling their medical data is authorized to do so under HIPAA? The fact that 7 out of 10 patients having knowledge of their rights under HIPAA may appear like a good record but only if all exercised their right. The most important fact is that there is the HITECH Act signed into law in 2009 to encourage the use of technology with health information and records and to allow penalties to be given for non-compliance with the HIPAA.
5. Ask If They Would Be Able to Produce Expert Medical Testimony
Many medical malpractice suits end up going to trial. When that happens, it’s imperative that attorneys are able to produce expert witnesses who can break down in laymen terms to judges and juries medical standards and where your physician failed you.
This expert testimony typically comes from a physician or a medical professor.
Get an understanding of who your attorney might call in to support your case in the way of expert testimony so you can feel certain that they’re well prepared to defend your case.
6. Consider Fee Structures
At the end of the day, no matter how good your attorney is, if you can’t afford them you can’t hire them. The good news is that many of the best medical malpractice lawyers work on a contingency basis.
What that means is that they take a percentage of whatever earnings they win you during your court case.
Contingency fees can vary widely but typically sit somewhere between 20% and 50%.
7. Make Sure Your Lawyer Seems Vested
As we mentioned previously, most medical malpractice cases will go to court. This starkly contrasts personal injury cases which have a tendency to settle before anyone needs to step foot in front of a judge (if you’ve suffered a personal injury, learn more about your options on this blog).
Given that the road to getting a favorable verdict in your case may be a long one, you’ll want to make sure that you feel comfortable working with your lawyer and that they seem vested in leading your case until the very end.
Remember, if a lawyer seems wishy-washy when you first meet, that disposition will only get worse as the weeks and months go by.
Wrapping Up How to Find the Best Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Finding the best medical malpractice lawyers can be an exercise in patience. First, you have to search both online and offline to create your list of prospects. Then, you have to be tedious in your assessment of the value they can bring to your case.
The more time you take upfront to find a quality lawyer though, the more likely you’ll be to walk out with a favorable settlement!
Navigating the legal niche can be tricky. Because of that our team at Halt Lawyer Directory aims to make things easier by providing you with professional-grade legal content and a directory that hosts the best lawyers from all over the country.
Read more from our blog or start your search for a qualified malpractice attorney with our tools today!