The most common type of professional malpractice is medical malpractice, which usually involves a physician or another health care professional that has been negligent while diagnosing, treating, or advising a patient.
For over 50 years, the personal injury law firm of Finch McCranie LLP has helped patients recover their medical malpractice compensation for their injuries. Our medical malpractice attorneys can obtain the best results possible for your malpractice case.
In Georgia, medical malpractice cases tend to be among the most complex types of personal injury claims. The thought of suing a doctor, hospital, or big insurance company can be intimidating for many people. The lawyers at Finch McCranie has decades of experience in pursuing these types of claims and handling the complexities involved in filing and prosecuting these cases.Common Medical Malpractice Claims in Atlanta, Georgia
We have experience representing clients in Atlanta and throughout the State of Georgia in a wide variety of medical malpractice cases, including:
Mistakes in Diagnosis/Treatment:
- Failure to order appropriate diagnostic testing
- Failing to adequately review lab results
- Failure to diagnose cancer
- Failure to treat infection
- Failure to recognize and treat medical conditions in a timely manner
- Prescription drug errors and overdoses
Medical Procedure Error:
- Organ transplant errors, including heart and lung transplants
- Plastic surgery errors
- Foreign objects left in following surgery
- Negligent patient supervision
- Nursing home negligence
- Pressure Sores/Ulcers
The Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers at Finch McCranie understand that successful medical malpractice cases hinge on two issues:
- Evidence – We will investigate and collect all evidence which may be relevant to bringing a successful medical malpractice claim. This includes obtaining certified copies of the medical records and bills, radiology films, and, in certain cases, what is known as an “audit trail”. An “audit trail” is a collection of electronic data that can allow us to determine every healthcare provider who has accessed your records, when and what records they viewed, and what changes, if any, were made to the records. In certain cases we will also obtain emails, text messages, and other electronic communication between providers concerning the care at issue. We will also interview witnesses and take the depositions of those healthcare providers involved in the patient’s care.
- Experts – All medical malpractice claims in Georgia require use of an expert who can establish the appropriate “standard of care” that applies to a case. The “standard of care” is defined as what a reasonably prudent healthcare provider would do under similar circumstances. Expert witness testimony is required to explain how a healthcare provider breached the standard of care and show how that breach resulted in injury to the patient. At Finch McCranie, we work with highly qualified experts from many difference fields of medicine. We have relationships with healthcare providers in almost every field of medicine and we take care to hire the best, most qualified experts to review your case.
The Atlanta medical malpractice attorneys at Finch McCranie prepare every case as though it is going to trial. This approach often allows us to resolve cases through a settlement process called mediation. Defense lawyers know that we have a long history of success in obtaining large verdicts for our clients in medical malpractice cases , which help us to resolve a large number of cases without the uncertainty and expense involving a jury trial.
All of our medical malpractice cases are handled on a contingency fee basis. This means that you will pay no legal fees or upfront costs unless we secure a verdict or settlement on your behalf.What Compensation can You Recover in a Georgia Medical Malpractice Claim?
Under Georgia law, the damages available to victims of medical malpractice may include:
- Economic damages – This compensation can cover past and future medical expenses as well as income you have lost or will lose in the years ahead due to the negligent act or omission that harmed you.
- Non-economic damages – This is compensation for the intangible harm that you have suffered such as pain and suffering. It is possible to recover damages for both past and future pain and suffering.
If medical malpractice caused the death of a loved one, Finch McCranie can seek different damages on your behalf such as compensation for funeral expenses and the loss of financial support.How Long do You Have to File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit in Georgia?
In most instances, medical malpractice cases are subject to a two-year statute of limitations from the date of injury or death. See O.C.G.A. § 9-3-71(a). While the typical medical malpractice case is subject to a two-year statute of limitations, there are exceptions:
In “foreign object” cases involving leaving objects inside patients during surgery, such as sponges, needles, broken scalpels, etc., may be brought any time within one year of discovery of the object. See O.C.G.A. § 9-3-72.
In cases involving minors, when a child is injured, the child and the child’s parents have separate and independent claims. The parents’ claims include all medical and other necessary expenses related to the injury of the child up to the age of 18, and loss of the child services. For medical malpractice occurring before a child’s fifth birthday, the child’s suit must be filed by the seventh birthday. For acts of medical malpractice occurring after the fifth birthday, the limitation period is two years from the date of malpractice. See O.C.G.A. § 9-3-73(b).
In a case involving a wrongful death claim, the lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date of death. See Hart v. Eldridge, 250 Ga. 526 (1983).
In a case decided in June of this year, the Court of Appeals held that under the proper circumstances, an amended complaint adding a new party in a medical negligence case can relate back to the original filing for purposes of the two-year statute of limitations. See Tenet Healthsystem GB, Inc. v. Thomas, 816, S.E. 2d 627 (2018).
Georgia also has a statute of repose, which provides that even if the patient or family did not know about the malpractice, unless there is fraud, concealment, or misrepresentation, under no circumstances may a healthcare provider be sued for medical malpractice more than five years after the actual incident of malpractice. See O.C.G.A. § 9-3-71(c). The statute of repose prevents the filing of a wrongful death medical malpractice claim if five years have passed between the time of the malpractice and the filing of the claim, irrespective of the date of death. See Braden v. Bell, 222 Ga. App. 144 (1996). However, the courts have allowed the filing of a wrongful death claim outside the five-year period if it is filed as an amendment to an already filed medical negligence lawsuit. See Wesley Chapel Foot and Ankle Center, L.L.C. v Johnson, 286 Ga. App. 881 (2007).Contact Finch McCranie Today for a Free Consultation