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What are some strategies to defend against medical malpractice?

Even the best doctors and medical professionals can be involved in medical malpractice lawsuits. Whether the claim is legitimate or not, it is vital to protect your rights and interests throughout the proceedings. The best way to do this is through a strong defense strategy.

The sooner you retain an attorney, the sooner that person can begin defending you against claims. Ideally, you should hire an attorney within two weeks of when the lawsuit starts. Your lawyer also can explain the legal process, if this is your first time facing malpractice charges, to make sure you are well prepared.

Depending on the specifics of your case, several different defense strategies may be utilized in your case. Some common malpractice defenses include:

  • Proving no negligence has occurred - Standards of care for the medical profession were upheld or the patient's injuries were not the result of a medical error.
  • Contributory negligence - Injuries would not have occurred if it hadn't been for a negligent act by the patient.
  • Respectable minority principle - Treatment was outside of the medical mainstream and the patient was aware of the risks involved.
  • Good Samaritan - Treatment was given in an emergency situation, and the standards of care were followed, so the medical professional is protected by law.
  • Statute of limitations - Time limit to seek legal action has passed, according to state law. In most cases, time begins ones a patient has made a "discovery" of his or her injuries.

Of course, this is just a broad overview of possible defenses and does not replace legal advice. Contact an experienced medical malpractice defense attorney to discuss specific defense strategies for your case.

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