Pine Bluff Medical Malpractice Attorney & Pine Bluff Medical Negligence Attorney
When does Medical Malpractice happen and what does it include?
Medical malpractice, also referred to as med mal, healthcare liability, doctor malpractice, hospital malpractice, or hospital negligence, occurs when a healthcare professional makes a careless (negligent) or reckless error, which results in harm to you, the patient. This can be particularly disturbing because we, as a society, rely on and trust our healthcare system, and especially our doctors, to provide quality medical care and act in our best interest. However, a 2004 study concluded that in an estimated 9 out of 10 medical malpractice trials, the alleged harm involved either a permanent injury (57%) or a wrongful death claim (33%). People in Pine Bluff and Jefferson County, Arkansas are injured every day due to negligent errors and sometimes even physician recklessness in hospitals and other healthcare facilities across the Greater Pine Bluff area.
Areas of medical malpractice include, but are not limited to:
- Doctor error
- Hospital error
- Surgical error
- Birth injuries
- Infant brain damage
- Medication error
- Failure to diagnose
- Nursing errors
- Nursing home errors
If you or a loved one has suffered at the hands of a negligent doctor or healthcare professional, you know how devastating this can be, particularly when the injuries sustained are serious, long-lasting, debilitating, or, worst of all, have caused a death. Doctors, like everyone else, should be held accountable for their negligence, and a Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney can help you make sure that physician recklessness and negligence doesn’t go unpunished. Most importantly, however, a Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney can help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Hospitals in the Greater Pine Bluff Area
Jefferson Regional Medical Center
Stuttgart Regional Medical Center
Dallas County Medical Center
Countless physician and hospital errors in the Pine Bluff area go unprosecuted, despite causing serious injuries or even death to patients. Contact a Pine Bluff lawyer for hospital negligence today to help you pursue your claim if you believe that you or a loved one has been injured by hospital negligence or medical negligence.
Brain Trauma Sustained at Birth
Infant brain trauma is just one of many areas of medical malpractice law; however, it is a unique area because the long lasting effects of a birth brain injury will impact all areas of a child’s life. Many births in Pine Bluff lead to the death or injury of either the mother or the child. The high strain placed upon the woman’s and baby’s body is extremely dangerous. The baby must deal with compression, contractions, twisting down the birthing canal, and being choked on the umbilical cord. As a result, many babies suffer injuries due to their oxygen supply being cut off or from the general strain from the birthing process. While the birthing process is difficult, the sad truth is that many times a baby’s injury is the result of hospital, doctor, or nurse negligence during the birthing procedure that could have been avoided altogether. Your baby may suffer from a long list of injuries such as: cerebral palsy, brachial plexus, birth hypoxia, shoulder dystocia, or Erb’s palsy.
If you believe that your child’s brain injury, learning disability, or physical or mental impairment might have been sustained during birth, you may have a legal claim against the doctor, nurse, and/or hospital. Contact a Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney or Jefferson County medical malpractice attorney to discuss your options.
For more information on damages potentially recoverable for brain injuries, click here.
Why do you need a Pine Bluff, AR Medical Malpractice Attorney?
No one wants to believe that their doctor has committed malpractice. The truth is that most Arkansas doctors are excellent physicians and try very hard to cure or help their patients. Also, just because there was a bad result does not necessarily mean that a doctor has committed physician or surgeon malpractice. For this reason, a Pine Bluff malpractice lawyer will usually investigate a claim of medical negligence very carefully before agreeing to actually go forward with and file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Most times, a Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney will hire an expert to review all the medical records, MRIs, films and all other types of medical evidence, and sometimes even have that expert meet and examine the client before commencing a malpractice claim. Having a trained Pine Bluff medical malpractice lawyer is essential when making a claim against a doctor or hospital. Rest assured that the insurance companies are armed with many malpractice defense lawyers and you need legal representation arguing on your behalf as well.
If you or a loved one has been harmed, you know how devastating an impact a doctor or other medical professional can have on a person’s life when he or she makes an error in judgment that results in injury, disfigurement, permanent paralysis, amputation, or even death. You need an experienced Pine Bluff malpractice attorney who can obtain an adequate settlement or, alternatively, show a court exactly the extent of your damages so that you are compensated for your injuries, pain, and suffering to the maximum extent possible under the law. The increased difficulty of prevailing in medical malpractice claims makes it all the more important that you retain a Pine Bluff medical negligence attorney to help you fight back.
A final reason to retain a Pine Bluff medical negligence lawyer to represent you in your Pine Bluff or Jefferson County malpractice claim is that a local lawyer probably knows a local expert who will testify at the trial or in a deposition if he or she makes a finding that negligence or recklessness was involved. Furthermore, it is readily accepted that Arkansas juries have a tendency to give more credence to a local physician’s testimony than an expert from somewhere else. Pine Bluff residents prefer scientists and lawyers with a reputation of excellence in their community, whom they can trust to provide the most accurate, definitive, and comprehensive evaluation of each element of the lawsuit. For this reason, it is in your best interest to obtain representation locally within the Pine Bluff area.
If you, or a loved one, have suffered at the hands of a negligent medical practitioner, call one of the expert Pine Bluff medical malpractice lawyers listed above. Pine Bluff medical malpractice law firms know how to deal with healthcare defense lawyers and can help you make sure that justice is served.
Arkansas Medical Malpractice Laws Overview
The following is a brief summary of the Arkansas laws applicable to all Pine Bluff, Arkansas Medical Malpractice Lawsuits:
- 2-year statute of limitations from the date of the breach or tort from completion of treatment. Different rules apply when the doctor negligently left a foreign object in your body and for children under 9 years old. (§ 16-114-203. Limitations) Filing notice can extend the statute of limitations.
- A procedural requirement that expert reports be filed early in the litigation process, generally within 30 days after filing a health care liability claim (§ 16-114-209 False and unreasonable pleadings).
- Specific requirements pertaining to a person’s qualification as an expert witness as to whether the physician or professional charged departed from accepted medical industry standards.
- Damage Caps: There is a cap on punitive damages in a Pine Bluff Arkansas Medical Malpractice case. The victim can recover up to the greater of $250,000 or three times the compensatory (actual damages) up to $1,000,000. (16-55-208. Limitations)
- Note that different rules may apply to governmental immunity for malpractice claims. Contact a Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney for further legal advice.
Other Important Considerations for Pine Bluff, Arkansas Medical Malpractice Claims:
- Arkansas law does not require arbitration in medical malpractice actions.
- If future damages are at least $100,000, Arkansas courts must order periodic payment of future medical costs if any party so requests, and may order periodic payment of other future damages on request as well (§ 16-114-208 Damages).
Collateral Source Rule:
- Arkansas follows the Collateral Source Rule, meaning that a claimant’s recovery cannot be reduced by benefits paid from a source other than the tortfeasor, such as an insurance provider.
- Arkansas law provides for a system of modified comparative negligence in all tort cases. This means that if the plaintiff bringing the claim is considered at least 50% responsible for his or her own injury, he or she is barred from recovering any damages at all. If the plaintiff’s fault is 49% or less, however, recovery is diminished in proportion to the percentage of fault (§ 16-55-216. Comparative fault).
Joint & Several Liability:
- Joint and several liability refers to the legal practice of holding more than one defendant jointly liable for the entire amount of a plaintiff’s damages. In Arkansas, each defendant is only liable for their share of the damages. (16-55-201. Modification)
- Vicarious liability refers to the legal practice of holding one party liable for the negligent or otherwise tortious actions of another, despite the fact that the party held vicariously liable was not directly responsible for the injury. For example, a hospital might be held vicariously liable for the negligent acts of one of its surgeons or nurses. According to Arkansas law, the person who caused the injury must be proved to actually be an employee for this liability to attach. (§ 16-114-210 Employed medical care provider) This can be difficult to prove because many doctors and surgeons are independent contractors.
If you have been harmed due to the negligent or reckless behavior of a doctor, hospital employee, or other healthcare professional, you may be entitled to compensation. Call one of the Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorneys listed above for a consultation regarding your claim before Arkansas’s 2-year statute of limitations expires and you lose your legal rights!
Pine Bluff personal injury lawyers are experienced in handling medical malpractice and doctor and hospital negligence cases in both federal and state courts across the Greater Pine Bluff area. Just one of the many courts in which Pine Bluff injury lawyers typically try cases is:
Jefferson County Circuit Court
101 W. Barraque St.
Pine Bluff, AR 71601
Personal Injury Attorneys Serve Pine Bluff and Surrounding Communities
Serving clients throughout Southeastern Arkansas, including Arkadelphia, Center Grove, Clarksville, Cornerstone, Dumas, El Dorado, Fordyce, Friendship, Grady, Greenville, Hot Springs, Jacksonville, Little Rock, Mount Zion, Pine Bluff, Redfield, Sheridan, Wabbaseka, Warren, White Oak Bluff, Wrightsville, and other communities in Jefferson County.
When you need someone in your corner, a Jefferson County personal injury lawyer will be there for you. Call now to speak with an experienced Pine Bluff medical malpractice attorney today.