Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Miami and West Palm Beach, FL

Brain disease diagnosis with medical doctor seeing Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) film diagnosing elderly ageing patient neurodegenerative illness problem for neurological medical treatmentMedical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider violates the standard of care that a patient is owed, resulting in harm to a patient. The field of medicine has specific guidelines for how conditions should be diagnosed and treated, as well as well-developed theories of ethics that apply to any healthcare provider who has a provider-patient relationship. Healthcare providers can include medical doctors, nurses, hospitals, therapists, dentists, nursing homes, and anyone else who has a duty to treat a patient. The duties and standards of care may be confusing to many individuals who are not either in the medical field or the legal field. If you are uncertain of the circumstances, contact a medical malpractice attorney for clarification as to whether you have a case.

According to WebMD, deadly, preventable medical errors kill up to 100,000 Americans annually. As any medical malpractice lawyer can attest, there are even more cases of preventable medical errors that lead to long-term injury and even permanent disabilities. A wide range of conditions and situations that patients find themselves in due to the preventable errors or deliberate choices of medical professionals caring for them may come under the umbrella of medical malpractice; it’s important to get a second opinion if you feel truly uncomfortable with the progress of your diagnosis or treatment. If you find in the course of receiving your second opinion that there are greater problems as a result of incorrect treatment or diagnosis, consider contacting a personal injury attorney with medical malpractice experience to see what your rights may be.

Medical malpractice claims in Florida have specific legal requirements, including pre-lawsuit requirements and strict time limits. The statutes can be found in Chapter 766 of the Florida Statutes are called “The Medical Act.” It is not well-advised that a patient attempt to learn everything about medical malpractice law on their own; an experienced medical malpractice attorney has a responsibility to keep up-to-date on changes to the law.

Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorneys In South Florida

Shot of a stethoscope ,glove and mask lying on top of a white table

Our firm helps people who have suffered from such tragedies such as:

Defending The Injured

Our experienced medical malpractice lawyers understand the complex and evolving Florida medical malpractice law. We also retain nationally renowned experts in fields of medicine. We will help you get compensation for your pain and suffering; compensation for medical bills; help you find medical treatment; help you recover lost, present, and future job income; and help you deal with the insurance company. We can also file a wrongful death claim if someone you love was killed in an accident due to medical negligence. It is important to use all of the resources that are available to you to pursue your claim if you are a victim; consider that the insurance company keeps lawyers on retainer specifically for the purposes of defending itself against claims, whether frivolous or rightful. Shouldn’t you take a similar precaution when you’re pursuing your own claim?

While every case is different, and there is no way to guarantee an outcome, it’s a good idea to know the success rate of any medical malpractice attorney you decide to work with. We’ve had several notable successes in the field of medical malpractice claims, including a victory early in 2019 for a client who received additional damages on appeal for failure to diagnose breast cancer. Our client, Estrella Estrada, received a routine mammogram in 2007; the radiologist failed to report microcalcifications that are indicative of early-stage breast cancer, and by 2010, Estrada had developed stage-three breast cancer, requiring extensive treatments. Because of the fact that Ms. Estrada’s condition could recur—and if it did, would prove fatal—an appeals court awarded more than the original damage award of $1,000,000 after considerable hard work by our medical malpractice attorneys. Another notable case that we have worked on came to a settlement of $750,000 before trial after the plaintiff we worked with overdosed tragically on a toxic combination of prescription medication and alcohol. The suit was against the pharmacy responsible for continuing to fill prescriptions without appropriate monitoring.

What Is The Standard Of Care?

The standard of care is the attentiveness and caution with which a medical professional is required to provide while taking care of his or her patients. To prove that medical malpractice occurred, there must be a breach of the standard of care.

Who is responsible for medical malpractice?

Any type of healthcare professional can be held accountable for medical malpractice. In addition, the facility, hospital, office, or organization that they work for can also be held responsible and there can be multiple parties involved in one lawsuit.

What should I do if I suspect that I was a victim of medical malpractice?

There are statutes of limitations when it comes to medical malpractice cases. This means that you must take immediate action to avoid losing your right to seek compensation. You should quickly consult with a South Florida medical malpractice attorney; ask for copies of your medical records; get another opinion on a medical examination from an independent party; keep all financial records and receipts related to any financial loss; and, write down all information related to the event, including how it has affected you both physically and emotionally.

Consult Our Medical Malpractice Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed due to medical malpractice and would like to learn more about your legal rights, please contact Zimmerman & Frachtman online or call (954) 509-1900. We offer free consultations and charge you only if our South Florida medical malpractice attorneys win your case.

 

Medical Malpractice FAQs

Medical malpractice is when a healthcare provider violates the standard of care that a patient is owed, resulting in harm to a patient. Healthcare providers can include medical doctors, nurses, hospitals, therapists, dentists, nursing homes, and anyone else who has a duty to treat a patient.
According to WebMD, deadly, preventable medical errors kill up to 100,000 Americans annually.
Yes. Medical malpractice cases are often complex and difficult to pursue and can be quite expensive to litigate. Our firm will obtain all of the proper medical records, laboratory results, pathological reports, and all other data resulting from testing that may be relevant to your case.
If you have been injured because of your healthcare provider’s medical negligence, you have a right to file suit. If injuries to members of your family that result from medical malpractice lead to permanent disability or death, you may also file a claim. Parents may sue for medical malpractice in Florida if their child is 25 or younger. This rule is unique to the state of Florida and stands firmly even if the malpractice results in the child’s death. If the situation is reversed, children over 25 cannot file a medical malpractice claim against the injury or death of their parents either. In such cases, the only plaintiffs allowed to file a medical malpractice claim are those individuals included in the deceased individual’s estate.
You’ve likely heard a lot about medical malpractice in the news lately. It seems as if there’s a new suit regarding it every other month. What is it though? Any time that a health care provider fails to provide a patient with care that follows widely accepted and respected medical principles and techniques, that’s malpractice (also known as professional negligence). However, a healthcare provide doesn’t have to ‘do’ anything ‘wrong’ to be guilty of medical malpractice- he or she can also fail to do something that is necessary for the patient’s safety and/or recovery.
Under the regulations in place at the time this FAQ is being authored, any individual that caused injury to you while a patient in their care via professional negligence can be named as a defendant in your case. However, the statutes that govern medical malpractice claims against medical institutions and private individuals (Statutes 766-768) are often revised. We can provide you with the very most up-to-date information on the matter when you call our office for your free consultation.
It is important to note that cases against the entities ran by the government, as well as the health care professionals employed by them, must be handled a bit differently. In these scenarios, patients’ claims may be restricted in terms of the amount of damages they may receive, as well as the types of evidence required to prove legal responsibility. Don’t worry. Zimmerman & Frachtman is familiar with the rigorous requirements of filing a medical malpractice suit against a government entity and will guide you through the process with ease.
Florida has a two-year statute of limitations in medical negligence cases. Generally, this means that the lawsuit must be brought within two years from the time the patient, family member, or guardian knew or should have known with reasonable diligence that the injury occurred with a reasonable possibility that medical malpractice caused it.
The statute of limitations for medical negligence and malpractice cases in Florida is two years. This statute means that a lawsuit must be filed within two years after you ‘should have’ known that your injury likely occurred due to medical malpractice. Florida’s ‘statute of repose’ states that you cannot sue a health care provider for malpractice after four years, unless concealment, misrepresentation, or fraud occurs. The only significant exception to the law is known as “Tony’s Law”. It was enacted in 1996 and states that for all malpractice incidents occurring after July 1, 1996, the statute of respose cannot restrict a child’s malpractice claim before he or she turns eight. However, the two year statute of limitations can still keep parents from filing a claim if there is reason to suspect they should have known of the injury and that it was likely caused by medical malpractice.
Again, the legal limitations regarding the process of filing a medical malpractice claim can be complicated, and they are updated quite often. If you have any questions or concerns on the matter, please feel free to bring them up when you call the Zimmerman & Frachtman firm for your free consultation.
Unfortunately, very few of the patients who are harmed by medical professional negligence actually fight for the compensation that they deserve- despite the fact that Harvard studies have estimated deaths resulting from medical malpractice total 98,000 a year. This death total is more than two times that of auto accidents, nationwide. There have been few studies on the matter, but an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1991 claimed that around 2% of individuals who have been injured via physician malpractice sue.
When filing a claim of professional negligence against any health care professional, the plaintiff is responsible for proving:
  • Damages: This is defined as ‘harm to the patient, as a direct result of the health care provider’s negligence’. This ‘harm’ may be financial, emotional, or physical.
  • Proximate Cause: This is essentially defined as ‘proof that the healthcare professional’s actions caused the damages and that the damages were reasonably foreseeable as a result of the healthcare professional’s actions’.
  • Negligence: This is defined as ‘failing to use ordinary care’. In the a medical malpractice case, this definition goes one step further to encompass the failure of a medical professional to do something in keeping with good and widely accepted medical or nursing practice.
Failing to prove any of these three elements guarantees your case will be unsuccessful.
The golden standard, of sorts, for proving medical negligence in Florida is trusted expert testimony. A licensed physician that is either practicing currently or was practicing at the time in question, and who is thoroughly familiar with what qualifies as good and widely accepted medical practice for the care in question will be tasked with demonstrating whether or not the defendant’s actions violated those practices. If the plaintiff does not introduce this expert testimony to the court, the plaintiff is usually said to have failed to make their case, because they have failed to provide proof of negligence.
Proximate cause often requires expert testimony, as well. A physician with the qualifications aforementioned must testify under oath that the plaintiff’s injuries would most likely have never occurred, had the health care provider in question followed proper medical practice. He or she must also be able to assert that the health care provider could have foreseen such unwanted results.
Damages are often proved by testimony from the plaintiff, family and friends, as well as medical and financial records and photographs of the injuries.  Elements of damage such as future medical expense, loss of wages, and disability could require the testimony of an expert.
Not usually. Doctors are only legally required to have the knowledge and experience necessary to perform the services that they administer. They are not required to guarantee that said services will be successful. Furthermore, a misdiagnosis may occur even if standard tests are performed accurately and evaluated by a licensed doctor with the utmost of care. The only cases in which a misdiagnosis can qualify as malpractice are cases in which a doctor orders an inappropriate test leading to an inappropriate diagnosis, fails to obtain a thorough medical history, and/or fails to recognize obvious symptoms of an illness.
No. While the form may impose certain limits on your rights, signing a statement assuming the risks involved with a procedure does not let the doctor or hospital off the hook if they fail to perform according to acceptable levels of care.
Definitely not! The statement you signed states that you assume the risks associated with the procedure when it is performed according to industry standards and acceptable levels of care- NOT the risks associated with a healthcare provider failing to provide them. Furthermore, there are some situations in which the consent becomes invalid, including:
  • You were not properly informed of the risks associated with a procedure.
  • You were misled about the procedure.
  • The procedure was performed incompetently, leading to injury.
You may take legal action if:
  • The operation was not medically necessary.
  • Your consent was procured in a fraudulent manner.
  • The operation departed from standard medical practice.
Usually, settling such a case takes between one and three years. This figure may vary due to a variety of factors, including:
  • How many parties are involved
  • What sort of investigation is needed
  • The number of depositions there are
  • Schedules/prior commitments of expert witnesses
  • The judge
If your case it settled successfully, the defendant has a right to appeal. The appeal may prolong the conclusion of your case by two to four years.
Not when there is a need for emergency medical treatment! When it comes to non-emergency treatment, the rules are a bit more clouded; it depends on whether the hospital is a private or public hospital. Private hospitals have the legal right to refuse non-emergency treatment to potential patients who cannot pay for their treatment. Usually, hospitals of either kind cannot stop treating a patient once he or she has been admitted. If treatment is going to be discontinued by a hospital because of nonpayment on the part of the patient, sufficient notice to the patient is required. If patients are extremely disruptive or defiant, their treatment may be dropped in an effort on the hospital’s part to maintain a therapeutic environment.
Not necessarily. In some cases, Zimmerman & Frachtman representative can attend them for you. If a court hearing does require your attendance, you will be notified in advance.
We handle our medical malpractice cases on a contingent-fee basis. You are not expected to cover any expenses involved with developing the case until you have received your compensation. Once you have, our legal fees will simply be deducted from the settlement. If your case fails and no recovery is realized, you will owe nothing out of pocket.
Medical Malpractice cases are expensive to prosecute because of the need to obtain medical records, take depositions, and pay expert witnesses for their time. Technology and exhibits that demonstrate the injuries you were subjected to in the court room are also an expense. Depending on the specifics of your case it may cost between $50,000 and $200,000 to settle. Don’t hesitate to seek justice for your personal injury and damages over these figures, though. Call the Zimmerman & Frachtman firm today for a free consultation and a more narrowed-down estimate.