Atlanta Emergency Room Malpractice Case Process

Atlanta is home to many exceptional medical facilities; however, even the best emergency rooms can be held liable for committing errors. Pursuing a medical negligence case against an emergency room worker can be difficult, as these departments have certain protections under the law.

With an experienced emergency room errors attorney on your side, you could have access to the professional insight needed to navigate your claim. Call our office today to learn how our team could guide you through the Atlanta emergency room malpractice case process.

Collecting and Reviewing Evidence

Like all malpractice claims, emergency room error cases often begin with an initial meeting with a lawyer to review relevant evidence. Injured patients should gather all the records they received from the medical facility and any other paperwork related to the error in question. It may also be beneficial to collect documentation of the resulting damages, including past pay stubs and bills for treatment.

Once presented with the details of the case, a lawyer may determine whether or not the patient has a valid claim. If the attorney believes malpractice was a factor in the emergency room error, he or she could initiate the litigation process by seeking out an expert and filing the case.

Obtaining an Expert Affidavit in Atlanta

State law mandates that injured parties must receive an expert opinion before filing a medical malpractice case. Under O.C.G.A. § 9-11-9.1, plaintiffs must file an affidavit from a qualified expert asserting at least one deviation from the standard of care that caused the patient’s injury.

This individual does not have to work in the same field as the negligent medical provider in question. He or she must only have sufficient recent experience with the illness, condition, treatment or surgery at issue.

Law firms often have the resources to get in touch with experts who could write this affidavit. An attorney could provide the medical expert with evidence to review, so he or she can determine if negligence was a factor in the error. Without a strong affidavit, an emergency room malpractice case may not be able to proceed.

Emergency Room Malpractice Trial Process

During trial, both parties will make opening statements, present evidence, call witnesses, and give their final remarks. The verdict is then decided by a jury.

Expert witness testimony is crucial in an emergency room error trial because the typical juror may not have enough medical knowledge to determine if there was a breach in the standard of care. An emergency room expert could inform the jury of the norms of the profession and discuss how an emergency department worker under similar conditions would have cared for the patient.

It is important to note that proving liability in a trial is difficult because emergency medical staff have tort immunity. Under O.C.G.A. § 51-1-29.5, the patient in an emergency room case must use clear and convincing evidence to prove the healthcare provider was grossly negligent. Injured parties could benefit from retaining a lawyer with trial experience to represent them in an emergency room malpractice case.

Settling an ER Error Claim Outside of Court

If both parties are willing to settle, they could resolve the case at any time before the jury reaches a verdict. Certain cases, such as those with clear evidence of gross negligence, are more likely to be resolved outside of court than others. A skilled legal professional could work with an injured party to negotiate a reasonable settlement after an emergency room error.

An Attorney Could Guide You Through the Atlanta Emergency Room Malpractice Case Process

Attempting to handle your emergency room error claim alone could be detrimental to the success of your case. Without knowledge of the laws that govern malpractice lawsuits, you may not be able to recover the damages you need. Contact an attorney today to seek help with the Atlanta emergency room malpractice case process.