If your doctor made a careless mistake while treating you, you have the right to sue for monetary compensation for the losses you endured. Whether a doctor has malpractice insurance or not doesn’t affect your ability to file a lawsuit against them.
However, suing a doctor can be complicated. Doctors have the power of hospitals behind them, and hospitals have large law firms representing them in cases just like yours. A medical malpractice lawyer can help you navigate any difficulties you may face.
Doctors Are Not Always Required to Carry Malpractice Insurance
According to the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS), doctors are not always required to carry malpractice insurance. For example, in some circumstances, if they work at a large hospital, doctors may be required to carry a policy. Higher premiums, however, drive some doctors to opt-out of paying for coverage.
If you try to sue an uninsured doctor, the compensation you can collect will be limited to the doctor’s unprotected assets. Depending on how much money you need, you may have more trouble getting a settlement from an uninsured doctor than an insured one.
How Long You Have to Sue for Medical Malpractice in New York
New York Civil Practice Law & Rules (CVP) §214-A states that, with few exceptions, you must begin your medical malpractice lawsuit within two and a half years from the date of the incident. Therefore, to have any chance of receiving compensation, you must act quickly.
Determining Which Damages to Include in Your Lawsuit
Economic damages are recompense for the money you lost or spent as a result of the malpractice, including:
- Loss of wages
- Loss of financial support
- Medical bills
- Related bills
Non-economic damages are recompense for losses or injuries that do not have a clearly defined value. Examples include but are not limited to:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
You may qualify to recover compensation for both economic and non-economic damages. Consult with one of our attorneys if you have any questions about your eligibility.
How Hard Is It to Sue a Doctor for Malpractice
Suing a doctor for malpractice with or without insurance is extremely difficult. Medical malpractice lawsuits are notoriously difficult to win unless you have:
- Strong legal representation
- Solid evidence supporting your case
- Proof of the damages you sustained
Even though it’s hard to sue a doctor, it doesn’t mean it’s impossible. You shouldn’t let the difficulty dissuade you from starting your claim as soon as possible.
The Odds of Winning a Malpractice Suit
The odds of winning a malpractice suit are stacked against you – especially if you go it alone. In cases where there isn’t much evidence in your favor, juries side with doctors 80% to 90% of the time.
Cases with so-so evidence have roughly a 70% success rate in the doctor’s favor, and in cases where the patient has strong evidence, the doctor still wins 50% of the time. This is why it is crucial to have a good attorney by your side to help you. Our lawyers have the experience you need and the case results to back it up.
For example, we secured a $9.1 million verdict against doctors who performed a negligent and fatal coronary artery repair on a patient with a kidney injury. We know how to fight medical negligence cases and win.
What Is the Average Payout for Malpractice Lawsuits?
Every malpractice lawsuit is different. We can’t make any general estimates for your specific case until we review the details, most payouts tend to average around $300,000, give or take. Keep in mind that this is only the average, and your settlement can be much higher depending on your damages.
What the Morelli Law Firm Can Do for You
Our medical malpractice attorneys can assist you in several different ways:
- Investigating your case: It is essential to gather as much evidence as possible to prove both that malpractice took place and that it had a negative impact on your life. Your lawyer can hire experts to testify on your behalf.
- Filing your lawsuit: Your lawyer will notify your doctor and the court about your case, so you don’t have to, including filling out and filing all the required paperwork.
- Communicating on your behalf: Speaking directly to the other side gives them a chance to use your words against you. Let your lawyer do the talking instead.
- Negotiating in your best interest: Your lawyer will sit down with the other party and his or her representatives to negotiate the best possible settlement for you.
- Going to court: If your doctor is uncooperative, your lawyer may need to take them to trial. Since this is a civil matter, your lawyer can represent you in the courtroom without you even needing to be there.
Whether the doctor you’re considering suing is insured or uninsured, you should strongly consider getting legal representation for your case. Lawyers have the experience and skill necessary to handle your case at trial or during negotiations.
Call Us Today for Experienced Help with Your Malpractice Case
The Morelli Law Firm can evaluate your case for free and help you develop a plan to fight for the compensation you deserve. Call our office to get started with a free consultation. Every minute you wait is another minute that can count against your case, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us today.