Doctors, surgeons, nurses, pharmacists, medical technicians, and other healthcare professionals all provide enormously important services to their patients, keeping them healthy in body and mind. Although the majority of these specialists conduct themselves professionally and competently, the negligence of one doctor, hospital, or other healthcare provider can have traumatic and lifelong consequences for patients who receive improper care.
Patients who become victims of medical malpractice can suffer death or serious injury, and they and their families have the right to bring a claim against the negligent party. Our medical malpractice lawyers have brought claims against professionals in places such as Killeen, Wichita Falls, Austin, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, and across Texas and the country, from coast-to-coast. Handling claims involving cerebral palsy, birth injury, and wrongful death, our malpractice attorneys have represented clients in a wide range of cases and have obtained some of the highest settlements in history. Contact our firm today to meet with our medical malpractice attorneys.
Common Forms of Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice can occur in many forms, some more obvious than others. Some of the most common forms include: prescription drug mistakes, the failure to diagnose cancer or another serious disease, the misdiagnosis of a serious disease, emergency room error, surgical error, post-surgical infections, birth injury, wrongful amputation, unwarranted testing of experimental drugs on patients, and other kinds of inadequate or unethical treatment. If you or a loved one has suffered from birth injury, cerebral palsy, or another serious injury as a result of medical negligence, our attorneys can help you determine whether you may be eligible to bring a claim against the negligent party.
Affecting nearly five thousand newborns each year, cerebral palsy refers to any one of a number of neurological impairments resulting from the faulty development of or damage to the part of the brain responsible for movement and motor function. Cerebral palsy can also be accompanied by stunted intellectual development and impaired hearing and vision, as well as behavioral problems and seizures. Although cerebral palsy doesn’t always cause acute disabilities, a child with the condition may find it difficult or even impossible to walk or speak. Children with severe cerebral palsy will require intensive, lifelong care.
Although several things can cause cerebral palsy, including a traumatic fall, a brain infection such as bacterial meningitis, or a blow to the head sustained in a motor vehicle accident, it can also result from medical malpractice. If the obstetrician fails to recognize and address complications during delivery such as a prolapsed umbilical cord, fetal distress, or a series of changes in fetal heart rate, the baby’s health may be in jeopardy. The improper use of forceps or vacuum extraction can also lead to the development of cerebral palsy.
Our firm is dedicated to representing families who have been affected by cerebral palsy or any other birth injury as a result of medical negligence. Our medical malpractice attorneys and staff have specialized medical training that assists and informs our research and preparation for malpractice cases. Our senior attorney is a pharmacist, and another team member is a registered nurse.
Medical Malpractice and the Federal Tort Claims Act
Medical malpractice cases sometimes involve military doctors or hospitals, VA clinics and hospitals, and federally funded clinics. The Federal Tort Claims Act governs lawsuits against the United States government, including lawsuits involving military physicians, facilities, and other healthcare providers. With extensive experience in negligence and birth injury claims, our medical malpractice attorneys have handled FTCA cases all over the United States. In fact, our lawyers have obtained two of the highest Federal Tort Claims Act verdicts in United States history: Dickerson v. U.S. ($18.96 million received by our clients) and Lebron v. U.S. (over $15.75 million received by our clients). Both of these cases involved children who suffered serious birth injuries due to medical negligence.
It is important to consult with a medical malpractice lawyer experienced in FTCA cases because the FTCA adds additional rules and requirements that must be satisfied before the government will compensate you for your claim.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does it cost to hire a medical malpractice attorney?
Medical malpractice cases are different from other lawsuits. Rather than a typical retainer payment arrangement between lawyer and client, medical malpractice attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This means that there is no up-front cost to you. We advance the cost of the lawsuit. If we win the case or negotiate a settlement, our fee is a percentage of the recovery we get for you. We also take out any costs that we advanced in the prosecution of your lawsuit. However, you pay nothing if we don’t recover for you.
What is the average settlement for medical malpractice lawsuits?
Medical malpractice lawsuit settlements vary greatly depending on the circumstances. The settlement amount is determined through negotiations between the plaintiff and defendant(s) (through their attorneys) and is based on economic losses caused by the plaintiff’s injuries, plus any agreed compensation for non-economic damages which include things like emotional pain and suffering, mental anguish, impairment, and disfigurement.
It is important to note that many states have caps on the amount of non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. In Texas, non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases are capped by law, as follows:
- $250,000 for all doctors or health care providers other than a health care institution (like a hospital);
- $250,000 against a single health care institution;
- $250,000 for each additional health care institution.
It is very rare for cases to involve more than one health care institution. Most of the time, the non-economic damage cap in a given medical malpractice case is either $250,000 or $500,000 total.
What is the difference between medical malpractice and medical negligence?
Legally, the terms “medical malpractice” and “medical negligence” are the same. If a health care provider does something that a reasonably prudent health care provider in the same or similar circumstances would not have done, or doesn’t do something that a reasonably prudent health care provider in the same or similar circumstances would have done, the action or inaction of that health care provider may rise to the level of malpractice, or negligence. An example is a doctor who fails to diagnose cancer in a person who has cancer, despite knowing about signs and symptoms that were consistent with cancer. Another example would be a doctor who does not deliver a baby in a timely manner despite the fact that the baby’s heart tracings on a fetal monitor strip are nonreassuring for a period of time.
Contact Our Medical Malpractice Attorneys
It is extremely time-consuming and expensive to pursue a complex medical negligence case, but our firm can skillfully guide you through the litigation process. Contact our medical malpractice attorneys today to schedule a consultation.
You can look at our national reach page to see our success in states across the United States. You can also see our full results on our case results page. For more information and to schedule a consultation with our medical malpractice lawyers call our law firm at 866-566-4346.
Here are some of the cases that our Austin medical malpractice lawyers have won on behalf of clients: