Daytona Beach Attorneys - Reasons for Declination
Reasons why we may decline your medical malpractice case.
One of the primary reasons our Daytona Beach attorneys might elect not to pursue a claim for medical malpractice is strictly financial in nature. The physicians in Florida have a very strong lobby in Tallahassee and years ago were successful in having laws passed that make it difficult and very costly to bring a claim against a health care provider for negligence.
In most all medical negligence cases, we must have expert testimony from a qualified physician who is willing to testify under oath that the doctor against whom the claim is to be brought deviated from the prevailing standard of care. Regardless of the horrible nature of the injuries and despite how clear it may appear that the physician obviously committed malpractice, we none the less are still required to pay large sums, usually thousands of dollars, to the appropriate expert physicians to review the records and be willing to testify against another doctor. Expert witnesses of this nature are often difficult to locate and always very expensive.
In many cases, our firm of Daytona Beach attorneys pays hundreds of dollars for all of the appropriate medical records, and then hundreds and in a lot of cases thousands of dollars to a physician to review these records, only to be told the injury was unfortunate but not the result of malpractice.
In these cases, we must merely absorb these costs without any recovery. If we accept a case and pursue it, most physicians' insurance companies refuse to make any offers of settlement until expensive time consuming depositions have been taken. This includes depositions of all of the experts which, in medical malpractice cases, are almost always physicians.
Since it is often difficult to find physicians in Florida who are willing to testify against other local doctors, most of our experts are from out of state. As you can imagine, the cost of flying to California or New York to depose our experts can cost several thousand dollars per expert. In some cases there are as many as ten experts in all. As you can see, it is easy to spend many thousands of dollars, and in some cases, even hundreds of thousands of dollars, pursuing, a medical negligence claim. For that reason, we are not in a position to consider taking a case unless the injuries and damages are extremely significant.
Another problem area which sometimes precludes our Daytona Beach attorneys from inquiring into a case is a law called the statute of limitations. If a doctor injures someone as a result of his negligent driving, then his victim has 4 years from the date of the accident within which to file suit. If the same doctor injures someone as a result of negligence in his medical practice, then his patient is usually required to bring the claim within 2 years. If an injured patient waits too long the claim may be time-barred.
Yet one more problem we need to consider is whether we can prove the negligent conduct of the doctor or nurse who caused the injuries complained of by the injured patient. Very few individuals consult physicians without some type of underlying medical problem, and in many cases it is difficult to distinguish between the original medical problem and the injury which was caused by the doctor's negligence.
Sometimes the medical opinions our Daytona Beach attorneys receive are such that while the expert might believe that malpractice was committed, it would probably be very difficult or impossible to prove that the complication or injury was a result of something the doctor did or failed to do. We must decline cases of this nature, as well. For example, in failure to diagnose cancer cases, there must be a fairly significant time delay before any expert will testify that the delay made any difference in the ultimate outcome.
For the above reasons, as well as others, we must regrettably decline the vast majority of the inquires we are asked to consider. If we declined to undertake your representation, this does not mean that other attorneys will also do so. This merely means that your case does not meet the strict criteria we set for our firm. We would always encourage you to obtain a second opinion from another firm.