Reputable Maryland Lawyers for Medical Malpractice Victims
Medical malpractice is a topic that most of us don’t like to think about. It’s disturbing to ponder the fact that even the American Medical Association lists it as one of the leading causes of death. When it happens, however, you need to press forward with a claim to secure justice for yourself and to prevent your healthcare provider from harming other patients.
Suing vs. Settling
Medical malpractice defendants battle hard to avoid liability. This battle can take place in court, at the negotiating table, or both. Medical malpractice attorneys at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot, L.L.P., have a reputation for winning in court is so strong that well over 90 percent of our clients receive settlements from defendants who don’t dare take us on in court.
Negotiating with a malpractice insurance company is like stepping into the ring with a trained fighter. Our Maryland medical malpractice law team can take care of these negotiations for you, although only you can authorize any settlement. You can rest assured that we absolutely will not allow you to be taken advantage of by a greedy, evasive insurance company.
A Billion Dollars and Counting…
We take heart in the many awards that our peers in the legal profession have bestowed upon us.
- Four of us have been selected as Top Lawyers by the Washingtonian Magazine.
- Five of us have been named Super Lawyers (along with only five percent of our peers).
- Five of us are listed among the Best Lawyers in America.
Our peers may think highly of us, but ultimately it is what we are able to do for our clients that matters the most to us. And in that regard, we can’t complain. Over the past 35 years of personal injury practice, we have brought home over $1,000,000,000 in verdicts and settlements for our clients.
What Our Clients Say
“We owe so much to Mr. Schloss and you for taking care of us and leading the way when times were tough. Money can’t buy that kind of dedication.” – A Maryland Client
“You have taught me so much about patience and the law. My wife and I both believe you have done an excellent job watching out for our best interests. It’s because of your hard work that we have had about the best year since the start of this whole mess.” – Another Maryland Client
Some of Our Other Areas of Practice
Car Accidents: Car accident claims are archetypical personal injury claims, and most of these claims are paid out as private settlements by insurance companies. Unfortunately, relatively few victims receive the full value of their claim without the aid of experienced legal representation.
Workers’ Compensation: Almost three million workplace accidents occur every year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The workers’ compensation system allow you to win compensation without proving fault; however, compensation for pain and suffering is generally unavailable unless you find a loophole that will allow you to file an ordinary personal injury claim.
Construction Accidents: Construction workers are vulnerable to a host of injuries that office workers are not likely to suffer – slip and fall accidents, burns, and even electrocution are not uncommon. Not all of these claims are subject to the workers compensation system, as some can be handled as ordinary personal injury claims.
Asbestos Disease/Mesothelioma: Asbestos-related diseases are frequently deadly and sometimes take decades to manifest symptoms. Unfortunately, there are thousands of asbestos exposure sites in Maryland. It is possible to win an asbestos claim even if the company responsible (a former employer, for example) went out of business years ago.
Product Liability: Manufacturers, distributors, and designers of unreasonably dangerous products can all face liability if their product injures you. Under certain circumstances, you don’t even have to prove that the defendant was negligent in any way to win your claim.
Premises Liability: When you visit a commercial establishment or even a private home, you are entitled to a reasonably safe environment. The owner or renter should have either repaired any significant dangers or warned of them. If he fails to do so and you get hurt as a consequence, you have a premises liability claim.
Federal Tort Claims Act: A personal injury claim against the U.S. government is subject to a different set of rules than a personal injury claim against a private party. The Federal Tort Claims Act is the law that allows the federal government to be sued for personal injury, as long as certain special conditions are met.
Nursing Home Neglect: Nursing home neglect is a form of abuse, and it is morally unconscionable for a nursing home to get away with abusing your loved one. After all, if this type of behavior is ignored, it will only continue since understaffing saves money for the nursing home. It is up to residents, their loved ones, and their lawyers to draw a line in the sand, put a stop to the abuse, and demand compensation.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are the elements of a Maryland medical malpractice claim?
To win a medical malpractice claim, you must prove:
- a doctor/patient relationship existed at the time of treatment;
- your health care provider failed to treat you with a professional standard of care;
- your health care provider’s substandard treatment harmed you; and
- the harm you suffered caused (or will eventually cause) the amount of damages you are claiming.
What is “informed consent”?
“Informed consent” is the consent you give to treatment after being fully informed of the unavoidable risks of treatment. A healthcare provider will seek informed consent by presenting the patient with forms to sign. Although it is legally impossible to consent to negligence, lack of informed consent can sometimes form the basis for a malpractice claim.
Do I have to prove my medical malpractice claim “beyond a reasonable doubt?
No. “Beyond a reasonable doubt” is the standard for a criminal prosecution. The “preponderance of evidence” (roughly, “more likely than not”) standard applies to a medical malpractice claim. In a nutshell, you must prove the truth of every element of your medical malpractice claim (doctor/patient relationship, negligence, causation and harm) under this standard.
Do I have a medical malpractice claim if I can prove that the doctor misdiagnosed my condition?
Not necessarily. It depends on whether the misdiagnosis represented a departure from the doctor’s professional standard of care, and whether the misdiagnosis actually caused you harm. Not every mistake made by a doctor amounts to medical malpractice.
How should I proceed if my loved one died from medical malpractice?
If you are an eligible relative, you should pursue a wrongful death claim against the health care provider. You have until three years after the victim’s date of death to file a wrongful death lawsuit, and damages can be substantial.
Is a medical malpractice claim appropriate if I was harmed by a drug prescribed to me by my doctor?
Maybe, maybe not. Even if your doctor could not have foreseen the harm that the drug would inflict upon you, you might have a product liability claim against the drug manufacturer or distributor. Under some circumstances you can sue both the doctor and the drug manufacturer.
What damages are available for a misdiagnosis claim?
Damages in a misdiagnosis claim are based on the harm done by the misdiagnosis, not the disease itself. You might claim damages if the misdiagnosis:
- closed off certain treatment options;
- increased your suffering;
- allowed the disease to progress faster than it otherwise would have; or
- allowed the disease to reach the terminal stage.
Who should I file my claim against, the doctor or the hospital?
Your claim will probably have to be asserted against your doctor and, by extension, his malpractice insurance provider. It might be possible to sue the hospital as well, if the doctor was an employee of the hospital (most doctors are not employees of the hospitals they work for) or if the hospital was negligent in some way.
My doctor’s malpractice insurance company wants me to give a recorded statement. Should I do it?
No. They will be trying to trick you into saying something they can use against you later. Any communications with the defendant’s insurance company should be made by your lawyer.
We Either Win or We Work for Free
Our fee structure is arranged as a percentage of your recovery. That means if we fail to win compensation for you, our legal services will be free of charge. We’re not worried about that, since we win well over 90 percent of our cases. If we do win, you still won’t owe us anything until your money arrives. There’s no such thing as being too poor to afford us!
Act Quickly to Press Your Claim – Connects With Skilled Maryland Medical Malpractice Attorneys
Although a medical malpractice claim is an abstract legal concept, it can deteriorate over time just as a physical object can. Witnesses move out of town, for example, or the statute of limitations deadline approaches. If you suspect that you are a victim of medical malpractice in Greenbelt, Maryland, call us at (301) 830-4344 or simply contact us online for a free initial consultation.