Medical Negligence Claims: A Guide

Everybody makes mistakes at times, but when a medical professional is negligent, it can cause a serious reduction in quality of life. If you believe that a Doctor or Nurse has been responsible for your negative medical treatment, then you will need to be able to prove that negligence before any medical negligence compensation can be paid. This can be challenging, as courts assess negligence in comparison to the procedures that a reasonably competent Doctor would carry out, and that can be difficult to prove. You will also need to prove that you have suffered from unnecessary injuries as the result of that negligence. This too can often be difficult to determine, although with the right advice it is often the simplest element of the process.


Types of compensation

There are a number of questions to consider when it comes to assessing your type of compensation. Primarily, your medical negligence compensation amounts will be based on damages and the loss of quality of life. This means that you will need to be able to show how your life would be if you had not been the victim of negligence, and then compare it to how your life is now expected to be after the negligence has occurred. If a court finds that there is a clear difference between the two elements, then you will potentially be granted compensation that covers three specific areas. These are:


  • General damages – A total sum of money that will reflect the pain or injury that you have suffered.


  • Expenses – Often referred to as ‘special damages,’ this will be paid in compensation for loss of earning caused by negligent medical procedures, as well as medical costs and any additional travel expenses that may have resulted from your experience. In these instances, you will need to provide evidence of those expenses.


  • Future losses -You may require independent experts to assess this area, as you will have to provide the court with the relevant information regarding your future loss of earnings, as well as any costs of your future care, accommodation, and treatment.


When to claim?

Whenever you feel that you have cause to make a legal complaint then you should start the process as quickly as possible. This is largely due to the need to ensure that the relevant evidence is available. However, there is a three year time limit for medical negligence claims from the date of your medical procedure that you have to allow for. This three year deadline is not always applicable, such as in the case of the injury happening to a child, or those who are mentally incapacitated (as a result of the medical procedure or as a pre-existing condition).


Going to Court

Not every medical negligence claim makes it to court. In the majority of cases, settlements are achieved as long as there is evidence of the negligence. However, in cases of disputed claims, your legal team will be able to assess the outcome of your court proceedings. This will be judged on the evidence of the negligence and the evidence that you have suffered as a result of that negligence. The compensation amount must be recognised as reasonable in consideration of your past and present expenses.


Medical negligence can have catastrophic consequences for your quality of life. If you feel that you have suffered due to the quality of medical care that you have received, contact a legal expert so that they can guide you through the next steps.