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Yonkers Medical Malpractice Attorney

A healthcare provider who fails in their duty to provide competent care violates the patient’s trust, often with tragic consequences. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured due to medical malpractice, we may be able to help you recover compensation for the emotional and physical suffering that you have endured. Contact Lever & Ecker, PLLC for a free consultation today. 

Why Choose Our Yonkers Medical Malpractice Attorneys? 

Medical malpractice can impact every aspect of your life, and the lives of those around you. Although we cannot fix your injuries, we are committed to fighting for the compensation that can protect your family’s financial well-being at this time of crisis and compensate victims for their hardships endured.

Our law firm has over 50 years of combined legal experience in personal injury cases, and can handle even the most complicated of medical malpractice cases. Claims of medical negligence are vigorously contested by healthcare providers and their insurers, requiring attorneys with experience properly evaluating and prosecuting these types of cases. By working in conjunction with medical experts, we will provide you with legal advice and an answer to your ability to be compensated. 

There are no upfront costs for medical malpractice victims, and we will cover all expenses related to your case. If we do not recover compensation on your behalf, you do not owe us any legal fees as our law firm works on a contingency fee basis.

What Are Common Causes of Medical Malpractice Cases?

Medical malpractice is a broad term that encompasses almost any situation where a patient is harmed by a provider’s improper care. However, we commonly represent clients due to: 

A Violation of the Standard of Care

Healthcare providers are held to certain medical standards under the law. A patient has the right to expect that health care professionals will deliver care that is consistent with the standard of care collectively recognized by health professionals in the same field. When a medical provider deviates from their duty, it is considered malpractice. 

Anesthesia Errors

Administering the wrong anesthesia medication, prescribing too much, or too little. All of which can lead to extreme pain at best, or in some cases, death. 

Failure to Obtain Informed Consent

The law mandates that patients must be given the information necessary to make an educated and informed choice about what happens to their body. If a doctor makes unwanted contact with a patient’s body, then the health care provider can be liable for medical malpractice on the basis of failure to obtain informed consent.

Doctor or Nurse Fatigue

Just like anyone else, medical professionals need rest, and when they don’t get that rest, their work performance can drop due to fatigue. Performing medical procedures or basic health care services while fatigued can cause great risk to patients, as well as the people around the physician. 

Misdiagnosis

If a doctor diagnoses a patient with the wrong condition, that patient may receive unnecessary treatments and medications that can lead to injury or death. Similarly, failing to diagnose a serious condition early on can prove fatal for the patient. 

Prescription Drug Errors

If you receive the wrong medication, an improper dose, or a defective or dangerous drug, and you suffer illness or injury as a result, you may be able to take legal action against the hospital, doctor, nurse, or pharmacist responsible. Over 100,000 instances of suspected medication errors are reported to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) each year. 

Surgical Errors

Many medical malpractice injuries occur during surgery. Surgical errors include operating on the wrong patient, operating on the wrong part of the body, or leaving surgical instruments behind.

Birth Injuries

Birth Injury” refers to injuries suffered by infants or mothers during pregnancy, labor, delivery, or the post-delivery period. Any mistake by the medical staff or malfunction of defective equipment can cause a child or their mother devastating injuries that may result in disability or even death.

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How Do You Prove Medical Malpractice Occurred?

Proving a medical malpractice claim can be incredibly complex, and requires the following four elements: 

  • A doctor-patient relationship existed. Relatively easy to demonstrate with medical records, as it is proof that you hired the medical provider, and they agreed to treat you. Unless it was a consulting physician who did not directly treat you. 
  • Negligence occurred from the doctor. For negligence to occur, requires establishing the appropriate “medical standard of care,” and proving there was a breach of that standard of care (medical negligence). In simpler terms, you must establish what diagnosis, course of treatment, or procedure was medically appropriate considering the circumstances, and exactly how the healthcare provider fell short in your treatment. Doing so, will require testimony from a medical expert. (A mistake by the doctor or simply being unhappy with the care you were given, does not mean medical negligence occurred.)
  • The negligence caused the injury. This can sometimes be difficult to prove, as the medical provider may take the stance that the original disease or injury that brought you in to be treated caused the harm you experienced. You must be able to demonstrate that it is “more likely than not” that the injury was caused directly by the doctor’s incompetent decision(s) or treatment. Once again, you will need to present a medical expert who will testify to this effect.
  • The injury caused specific damages. The case may indicate that the doctor performed below the standard of care, but you must also have suffered damages. Those may include physical pain, mental anguish, medical bills in addition to those for the original illness or injury, lost income and/or lost earning capacity.

Experienced lawyers will take the lead when it comes to formulating the best strategy to prove liability in your medical malpractice lawsuit. A large part of that strategy is going to consist of picking the right medical experts or witnesses in the same field of medicine as the defendant, to establish the medical standard of care that applied in your case and how it was deviated from. 

What Damages Can Be Recovered From a Medical Malpractice Case?

If a medical professional’s negligence led to an injury, or worse, then it is only right that you receive compensation for your losses. There are two types of recoverable damages: 

Economic

Economic damages are awarded as a direct result of measurable financial losses, such as:

  • Medical expenses: costs for care and treatment related to the illness or injury resulting from the healthcare provider’s negligence.
  • Anticipated future medical expenses: any costs related to the illness or injury for medical care that you will receive after the conclusion of litigation. 
  • Lost wages: for the time missed from work while recovering, both up until now, and any time that will be missed in the future. 
  • Loss of future earning capacity: if the harm done interferes with your ability to earn wages in the future, by either being unable to work or forcing you into a different line of work. 

Non-economic

Non-economic damages include incalculable or subjective losses, such as: 

  • Loss of enjoyment of life: the ways in which your quality of life has been impacted. For example, being unable to do things that you were able to do before the incident of malpractice occurred. 
  • Loss of consortium: a spouse can recover this type of damages for the loss of marital benefits, such as affection, companionship, or sexual relations. 
  • Physical/Emotional pain and suffering: compensation for the amount of physical pain you have had and will endure, as well as the emotional distress caused by the injury or illness. Emotional distress can include, for example, depression, loss of sleep, anxiety, and other psychological symptoms. Unlike many other states, New York has not placed a limit on the amount of pain and suffering damages you can be awarded. 
  • Disability or disfigurement: the harm you suffered may have resulted in a permanent disability, making you unable to independently care for yourself. Disfigurement and scarring can last a lifetime, and may cause a great deal of emotional pain, affecting your ability to enjoy life and to socialize. 

The law provides no formula for placing a dollar value on any of these non-economic damages, and so it is ultimately up to a jury to determine what they are worth. In order to maximize your claim, a personal injury attorney will make sure the insurance company knows exactly how your life has been turned upside-down, and our law firm is here to help recover compensation for each type of non-economic damages legally available. 

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What is The Statute of Limitations to File a Medical Malpractice Case in New York?

The state of New York has set a specific time period in which medical malpractice victims are able to pursue a claim, known as the statute of limitations. The time limitation is as follows: 

  • Two and a half years, or 30 months, from the date of the injury. 
  • If there was a series of medical treatments, the 30 months began to run once the final treatment concluded. 
  • If a foreign object was left in an individual’s body during surgery, a claim “may be commenced within one year of the date of such discovery or of the date of discovery of facts which would reasonably lead to such discovery, whichever is earlier” (Section 214-A(a))

If you attempt to bring a claim once the statute of limitations has passed, a court can dismiss your case, and you will be unable to recover any compensation.  In some instances, the “discovery rule” may apply, which allows patients to file a claim once they discover a medical malpractice injury or reasonably should have known of its existence. In any case, the time period for filing a medical malpractice claim in New York is relatively short. A New York medical malpractice attorney should be consulted as soon as possible. 

How Can an Attorney Help My Medical Malpractice Case?

Hiring the right lawyers can make a critical difference in your case, because the burden of proof in a medical malpractice claim falls on you as the plaintiff. Our medical malpractice lawyers can offer the following: 

Explain When Things Should Happen

A lawyer can explain what is going on in your case, when things should happen, and will listen to what you have to say. As your medical malpractice case proceeds, questions will come up and decisions will need to be made. For example, whether to accept a settlement, how to handle ongoing expenses, the amount of time you should spend on your case, whether to file a lawsuit or not, etc. While each of these decisions requires your perspective, you can also depend on your attorney to advise and help guide you. 

Estimate and Explain What Your Case is Worth

After reviewing the details of your case, an attorney can give you a preliminary idea of its worth and how they arrived at that figure.  Medical malpractice claims are expensive and time intensive, so the attorneys will advise you whether it is in your best interest to settle with the insurer or pursue the case further. 

File Necessary Paperwork Before Deadlines

Medical malpractice cases must be filed before the statute of limitations deadline has passed. An experienced attorney will be familiar with New York’s lawsuit-filing deadline, and any pre-lawsuit requirements (certificate of merit) that can determine whether your claim can proceed or not. All New York medical malpractice cases require a certificate of merit in order to be heard in court, which is a document certifying that your lawyer consulted a medical expert who agrees that the legal action has merit. 

Conduct Research & Request Documents from Appropriate Parties

Researching your case, hiring medical experts, and gathering evidence are essential parts of building a medical malpractice case. The last thing that you want to do while recovering is waste time and money in sifting through or requesting copies of unnecessary information. Your lawyer will help you gather necessary evidence such as medical records and bills, insurance information, income wage statements, letters or other communication from your medical provider regarding the treatment or procedure, instructional manuals or documents related to devices that malfunctioned during use (when applicable). They will also speak to witnesses, work with expert witnesses who can provide insight into the medical industry and testify to the duties of the medical provider, as well as the expected standard of care.

Speak to a Yonkers Medical Malpractice Attorney

Lever & Ecker, PLLC aggressively represents victims of medical malpractice in Yonkers. Our Yonkers personal injury lawyers care about the community, and we are ready to do everything in our power to help you recover compensation for your losses. Contact us online or call (914) 288-9191  to schedule your free consultation today.