Clients who need their assistance find medical malpractice lawyers, just like patients who are sick look for physicians who can relieve them of their afflictions. Lawyers have a bit of edge over doctors – they can and routinely do reject cases referred to them if they don’t think they can win. Doctors are bound by ethics to provide treatment even to those people they may loathe.
Lawyers, especially medical malpractice lawyers in Philadelphia, almost always charge on contingency basis, which makes choosing winners essential to their financial well-being. Malpractice lawyers only sue to win. But choosing winners can be very tricky.
The first step in choosing a client with a winnable case is an interview. At this stage it may become apparent fairly quickly whether a case has potential or not. A small scratch usually means that there may not be a chance to win anything substantial; there usually needs to be a chance to prove substantial injury if not permanent disability of some sort in order to warrant a full-blown malpractice case. But there are cases where great malpractice lawyers are able to win huge amounts in damages for seemingly insignificant injuries; there is one case where a person was awarded millions in compensation for having been scalded by coffee at a fast food chain! If you are seeking excellent malpractice case representation, browse McLaughlin & Lauricella, P.C. Trial Attorneys site.
After establishing that the injury is significant, medical malpractice lawyers in Philadelphia need to determine if sufficient documentation exist to prove two important things: 1. that the prospective client suffered damage or injury; and 2. that the damage or injury was the result of negligence or malpractice performed by a medical professional with whom the prospective client has a doctor-patient relationship.
If the client’s case still passes this step, then the malpractice lawyer is likely to accept the case.
At this point the malpractice lawyer starts building a case against the offending medical professional.
Files and records of treatment are scoured for anything that would help the case. If witnesses are available, their testimonies are gathered. If testimonies from expert would help win the case, these are also obtained. It must be stressed that the lawyer usually advances the money for all the costs, and by this time he or she would be in the hole for a considerable sum of money.
After all evidences have been gathered, medical malpractice attorneys still don’t file a case in court. They reach out to the lawyers representing the medical professional in the hope of finding just settlement out of court. An out-of court settlement involves less cost in terms of filing fees and various other court costs. They also save on time, allowing the malpractice lawyer to move on to the next case.
If the settlement offered is insufficient or the other party refuses to settle, the lawyer then files a case in court. By then, well experienced lawyers, who may be members of the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys , would be reasonably sure they would win. With all the cash outlay they would have accumulated at that point, they cannot afford to lose!