Medical negligence is an unfortunately all too common occurrence in New York State as well as the rest of the country. Although we trust nurses, doctors, and other medical experts with our health and safety, accidents can occur due to distraction, inebriation, and other forms of professional negligence, both in the emergency room and at regular appointments.
Injured individuals and their loved ones have every right to file a medical malpractice or medical negligence lawsuit against those responsible. But even in the best of circumstances, such lawsuits are not guaranteed victories. Key tips to finding a skilled medical negligence lawyer can help you determine the best law firm for your needs.
Alternatively, you can contact Schwartzapfel Lawyers right away at 1-800-966-4999. As experienced medical malpractice attorneys, we’re well-equipped and ready to assist with your upcoming lawsuit or arbitration case. Protect your financial future starting today by calling us now!
Who Are Medical Negligence Lawyers?
Medical negligence lawyers are knowledgeable legal professionals who can help victims of medical malpractice or medical negligence seek compensation (i.e., damages) for their injuries, discomfort, medical bills, and other factors stemming from inadequate medical care.
Medical negligence lawyers provide important assistance to their clients. They perform legal duties such as:
- Gathering evidence for their clients (e.g., medical notes, camera footage, eyewitness testimony, etc.)
- Presenting evidence in court or to arbitration officers
- Providing sound legal counsel to their clients
Medical Negligence vs. Medical Malpractice
Medical negligence means that a medical professional, like a nurse or doctor, was negligent in their stated and/or implied patient duties. This is determined by comparing actual treatment to the medical standard of care (i.e., the reasonable level of care that a competent and/or skilled healthcare professional is expected to provide).
Moreover, medical negligence does not necessarily mean that a person was injured. For example, a nurse could be negligent in giving a patient the wrong medication. But if the patient discovers this and is not injured after taking the wrong medication, the nurse may be found guilty of medical negligence, not medical malpractice.
Medical malpractice only applies if a healthcare provider injures a patient due to negligence. Therefore, medical negligence is necessary for medical malpractice, but not the reverse.
Categories of medical malpractice include but are not limited to:
- Birth injuries
- Certain prescription errors and other medication errors
- Certain anesthesia errors
- Certain surgical errors
- Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose
To speak with an experienced medical negligence attorney at no charge, dial 1-800-966-4999 and allow Schwartzapfel Lawyers the honor and privilege of assisting you in your legal endeavors. Or, if you would prefer to read up more on the subject first, please continue reading.
How To Find the Right Medical Negligence Lawyer for Your Needs
While legal assistance is almost always a good way to bolster your medical malpractice claim’s chances, the right attorneys can make an even greater difference in obtaining a successful outcome.
With that in mind, here are some important tips to help you find the right medical negligence lawyer for your upcoming case.
First, you’ll need to identify available medical negligence lawyers in your area. That means asking friends or family members who may have had experience with medical malpractice lawsuits in the past.
For instance, if a family member was injured due to medical negligence and settled through a lawsuit or arbitration case, ask who they used for representation. This is a great way to learn the names and locations of available personal injury lawyers in your local area or city.
When you get the initial information, ask your friends and family members what they thought of their legal experience. If they were satisfied with their lawyers, consider calling them or checking out their website. Similarly, if your family members were dissatisfied with their legal representatives, you should not trust them with your case.
Ask Local Bar Associations
You can also ask for professional recommendations. The easiest way to do this is to make inquiries at local bar associations.
Your city, like New York City, may have its own bar association. Here, you should have access to a record of all legally registered and certified lawyers in the area. In addition, New York State has its own bar association for lawyers who operate throughout the Empire State.
In either case, bar associations include lists of law firms, their specializations, and who is involved in those organizations. This is a great way to drop a quick list of all the available medical malpractice attorneys you can contact. Plus, it’s a good method to avoid contacting a lawyer who specializes in another area of law than medical negligence.
To learn more, or to speak with a medical negligence lawyer about the specifics of your case, call Schwartzapfel Lawyers now at 1-800-966-4999! Your consultation will be free and the advice offered to you invaluable in deciding whether to pursue legal action, how to best defend your rights, and how to protect your financial future.
See if the Attorney is in Good Standing with Bar Associations
Once you identify one or more law firms that may help with your upcoming case, make sure they are in good standing with relevant bar associations. For example, the New York State Bar Association offers certificates of good standing. These certificates show that an attorney was licensed and admitted to practice in New York courts as of a certain date.
It also indicates that an attorney is registered with the Office of Court Administration and is in good standing. “Good standing” is only important if a law firm is relatively new or untested. It means that the attorney isn’t suspended or disbarred for any reason.
Note that most bar associations cannot tell you whether each attorney listed on their registries is in good standing. Only those law firms that apply for certificates of good standing will have this mark. Still, this is an important way to tell which law firms are worth your time and money compared to those that aren’t.
If a law firm is registered with relevant bar associations and is in good standing according to those registrations’ listings, you should take this as a sign to further investigate their practice.
Check the Firm’s Website
Finding a law firm is just the start. The next big tip is to do your own research by checking the firm or lawyer’s website. This only takes a few minutes, but it can tell you a lot about:
- Who the firm typically represents
- What kind of work the firm does
- Whether the lawyer in question specializes in medical malpractice or other types of legal cases
- Whether the firm has a history of successful verdicts/settlements
- And more!
Specifically, be sure to check out the firm’s landing page, their practice area pages, and any other pages of interest. Read up on everything you can. See if the copy is grammatically correct, if it persuades you, and if it indicates you can trust the legal group with your upcoming case.
Furthermore, firm websites should include multiple means to contact their attorneys. This is important if you decide to hire a firm, or if you simply wish to contact them to ask more questions.
Do an even deeper dive into a potential medical negligence lawyer by checking for testimonials and positive verdicts. Most high-quality law firms will have dedicated testimonials pages. These include positive reviews for their attorneys from previous clients.
Testimonial pages are an important factor to consider since:
- They let you see what prior clients thought of their experience with a given firm
- They let you see how an attorney treat their clients
- They give you some idea of the experience you can expect if you decide to hire a firm
More importantly, many testimonials pages can show you how much compensation you may receive from a successful lawsuit. But, please, remember: the stated compensation, or damages, of prior clients is not necessarily a guarantee that you’ll receive the same for your case.
To hear more about client compensation and past outcomes, call us now at 1-800-966-4999!
Check Other Online Reviews
As noted above, client testimonial pages can be useful, but they aren’t always 100% accurate when it comes to assessing a firm’s reputation. To really know how a medical negligence lawyer works and how satisfied their previous clients are, you’ll need to check elsewhere online.
Review sites like Google Reviews, Yelp, and even the Better Business Bureau are fantastic resources for investigating a firm and its past performance. These review sites are crucial since they allow you to see what disgruntled or unsatisfied clients think of a law firm or lawyer.
Of course, a few bad reviews do not necessarily mean that a medical negligence lawyer is not right for your case. Even the best attorneys sometimes lose cases. Some clients, furthermore, choose to blame their attorneys regardless of whether their criticisms are fair.
In any event, to come to a balanced opinion, use all the reviews you can find (i.e., via search engines, the law firm’s testimonials page, etc.). Truly, this is the best way to evenly analyze a firm’s reputation and the potential benefits of having them handle your case.
See if They Have Experience Trying Medical Malpractice Cases
Naturally, you should look specifically for attorneys with years of experience in medical malpractice or negligence cases. This is because you won’t want to hire a lawyer with extensive experience in another area of case law, such as bankruptcy, real estate, or tax law.
You can see if a medical negligence lawyer has a history of successful cases by checking their client testimonials page, as described above. If they’ve had more successes than failures, they may be worth your time.
Check for a Contingency Fee Basis
The right medical negligence lawyer for your lawsuit should work on a contingency fee basis. A contingency fee basis is an arrangement between a law firm and its client(s), wherein the firm will not charge the client(s) unless its attorneys first win them money through their case.
For example, say that you wish to file a lawsuit against a negligent medical professional or organization. If your case is successful, the law firm you hire will take a percentage of your damages or compensation. But if your case is not successful, then the law firm won’t charge you a dime.
The contingency fee basis is important for (2) main reasons:
- It enables clients to get high-quality legal representation without having to break the bank. This is doubly crucial if you are currently trying to pay for medical bills as a result of medical negligence and/or malpractice.
- It shows that a law firm is confident in its abilities. A law firm that promises only to charge you money if it wins must believe that it can do so consistently. Otherwise, it would go out of business.
A good rule of thumb is: If a medical negligence lawyer you’re considering doesn’t offer a contingency fee basis, move on. There are plenty of other worthwhile law firms that offer this policy and have produced long strings of successes.
Take Advantage of Free Case Evaluations
Just as you should only hire a medical negligence lawyer on a contingency fee basis, you should only hire a law firm that offers a free evaluation or consultation. Free case evaluations are meetings where you can speak with an attorney, describe your case, and get a sense of whether they’ll be a good fit for your needs.
Free case evaluations are important for attorneys as well, as they offer a chance to meet clients, assess options, and make recommendations to other lawyers if necessary.
Free case evaluations can be handled online, over the phone, or in-person, depending on the firm’s policies and your needs. It’s highly recommended that you take advantage of them in order to find the lawyer or law firm that serves your needs best.
Moreover, even if a medical negligence or malpractice firm seems right on paper, in-person meetings can be used to reveal collaborative issues or other problems ahead of time. This, in turn, will save you time since you won’t have to switch lawyers as you seek out the law office that is right for your case.
Schwartzapfel Lawyers offers free case evaluations for each of our clients. You can contact us today at 1-800-966-4999 and receive your consultation at no obligation and no charge. Reach out now, as you have a limited time to claim the compensation you are owed due to the potential statute of limitations of your case.
Ask the Right Questions
Last but not least, remember to ask the right questions during your free case evaluation. The most important questions to ask include:
- Who will be handling your case? A medical negligence lawyer should be prepared to dedicate enough time and resources to your lawsuit.
- Will your case be handled by an experienced attorney or a junior partner? You always want the most experienced attorney working with you.
- How many medical malpractice or negligence cases has the attorney handled before? This gives you some insight into their experience level with medical malpractice law.
- What percentage of medical malpractice cases go to trial? By no means a “gotcha question,” a well-qualified medical negligence lawyer will know that less than 10% of medical malpractice cases make it in front of a jury.
- What kind of compensation can you receive? Don’t trust a lawyer who guarantees you a set dollar amount for your compensation or damages. This is impossible, even for the best attorneys. Instead, ask this question to see whether a given law firm thinks your case has a good potential for a successful outcome.
Contact Schwartzapfel Lawyers Today
The right medical negligence lawyer can make a major difference in your upcoming lawsuit or arbitration push. That’s why you should contact Schwartzapfel Lawyers right away.
As knowledgeable New York medical negligence and malpractice lawyers, we’re more than capable of getting you the compensation you deserve by achieving justice in the wake of improper professional behavior. Additionally, we have experience successfully handling cases involving wrongful death, nursing home abuse, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and more.