Medical malpractice claims are especially difficult and expensive and require a lawyer with experience and knowledge. While lawyers are not specially trained in specific areas, most lawyers accept cases in limited areas based on their experience. The potential client should find a lawyer with the experience to properly present the client's case.
A potential client should contact a qualified lawyer as soon as possible after they suspect that their injuries are the result of malpractice by a physician, nurse, or technician. The lawyer can help the potential client preserve evidence of her injuries. This step is important because much of the evidence in lawsuits against physicians or hospitals is possessed by the health care providers. Photographs of injuries can be very important in substantiating the patient's account of the facts.
A potential client should remember that medical procedures sometimes have bad outcomes that are not the fault of the physician. After all, a patient is in the hospital because they are sick or injured. A lawyer can help the potential client decide whether her injuries are the result of substandard care by the health care provider. A lawyer will hire an expert early in his investigation to help evaluate the performance of the physician, nurse, or technician. If the patient is alleging that her health care provider provided substandard care, she must have the testimony of an expert witness supporting her allegations.
In addition to claiming that the care a patient received was substandard, she may file a lawsuit if the health care provider did not obtain informed consent for the procedure or if the health care provider promised that the injury the patient suffered would not occur. The health care provider must inform the patient of risks of the procedure that would be important to a reasonable patient in deciding to go forward with the procedure. The health care provider is not required to inform the patient of all risks of the procedure or of remote risks that would not effect a reasonable patient's decision to go forward with the procedure. The lawyer enlists the help of an expert witness to establish whether the risk is of a type that should be disclosed by the health care provider.