Serving Ohio Medical Malpractice Victims
Medical Malpractice in Ohio
When an Ohio medical professional is negligent and a patient suffers; as a result, the patient has two primary remedies—either file a medical malpractice lawsuit or a disciplinary complaint. A medical malpractice lawsuit allows the patient to recover compensation for the doctor’s injuries or other medical professional’s negligence. The doctor could receive disciplinary action, including revoking his or her medical license—when a disciplinary complaint is filed.
Medical professionals are highly trained, so we expect them to adhere to specific standards of treatment. While a bad outcome does not always mean medical negligence occurred, in some instances, the two are linked. While medical negligence cases can be turned over to the Ohio Medical Board, the outcome is different. A medical malpractice claim can result in a monetary settlement for the injured person. In contrast, a medical board complaint can result in disciplinary action against the medical professional, ranging from fines and probation to temporary suspension or permanent revocation of a medical professional’s license.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to negligence on the part of a doctor, hospital, nurse, nursing home, or another medical provider, The Brothers Law Firm can help! Our attorneys are experienced, knowledgeable, and compassionate to your current situation. We will fight aggressively for your rights and your future.
Medical Malpractice Statutes of Limitations in Ohio
All states impose deadlines for filing personal injury, wrongful death, and medical malpractice lawsuits, ranging from one year to six years or more. In the state of Ohio, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases can be as short as one year for certain types of claims while for others, like wrongful death or claims involving minors, it can be longer. These statutes can be complex, and it is highly recommended that you speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.
If during this one year, the plaintiff notifies the medical professional or institution that he or she is considering filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, an additional 180 days will be added to the one year. Ohio also has statutes of repose, which offer some exceptions to the time limits for filing a medical malpractice claim. These statutes can be complex, with plaintiffs significantly benefitting from speaking to an experienced medical malpractice attorney from The Brothers Law Firm.
What Constitutes Medical Malpractice in the State of Ohio?
Generally speaking, proving the elements of medical malpractice will require expert testimony, simply because most jurors would be unable to properly determine whether medical malpractice occurred, absent testimony from one or more expert witnesses. Plaintiffs must show the following to claim medical malpractice in the state of Ohio successfully:
- A physician-patient relationship existed
- The medical professional owed the patient a duty of care
- The medical professional breached that duty of care
- That breach caused injury to the patient
- Those injuries resulted in specific damages
Medical professionals owe their patients a “duty of care,” meaning they must adhere to certain standards. To determine whether a medical professional was negligent, a jury will consider whether another medical professional with similar medical training would have reasonably acted in the same way, given the same set of circumstances.
Is Medical Malpractice a Criminal or Civil Matter?
Medical malpractice is virtually always a civil matter; the claim is filed in an Ohio civil court. The plaintiff’s goal is an award of compensation to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. In rare cases, a healthcare provider acts in a grossly negligent, incompetent, or indifferent manner to their patient’s care. In other words, rather than making a careless mistake, the medical professional must have ignored information that would threaten the patient’s life, must have shown up to work impaired (thus unable to perform the job), must have abused a patient, or must have completed an illegal activity while on the job.
What Damages Can Be Awarded in an Ohio Medical Malpractice Claim?
In an Ohio medical malpractice lawsuit, a plaintiff can recover compensatory damages that can further be broken down into economic and noneconomic damages. Monetary damages include expenses that are quantifiable, such as lost wages and medical expenses. Noneconomic damages include costs that are more difficult to quantify, such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium, mental anguish, and disfigurement.
Ohio Caps for Medical Malpractice
Thirty states (who have survived constitutional challenges) have placed a cap on medical malpractice damages. Ohio is one of those states. Some states have caps only on noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering, while others have caps on economic damages. Still, others have what is known as a “hard” cap, which means there are no exceptions, the lids do not adjust over time, and the caps apply regardless of the number of defendants or plaintiffs.
In the state of Ohio, the medical malpractice cap for noneconomic damages is $250,000, or three times the plaintiff’s economic damages with an overall maximum of $350,000 per plaintiff, or $500,000 for each case for more than one plaintiff. If a plaintiff’s injuries are found to be “catastrophic,” the limit is set at $500,000 per individual and $1 million per occurrence.
There is also a Constitutional provision prohibiting caps on wrongful death claims. Medical caps can make malpractice claims even more complicated, mainly if your medical expenses are significant and you will need extensive medical attention for a long time. Attorney John Brothers will aggressively pursue the compensation you need to have the future you deserve.
How The Brothers Law Firm Can Help Those Injured by Medical Malpractice
If you believe the negligence of a doctor, hospital, or other medical professional caused your injury or harm, The Brothers Law Firm can help. We understand that life can become very difficult when you have been injured by a doctor’s negligence. Contact The Brothers Law Firm—we have the experience, knowledge of Ohio medical malpractice laws, and skills necessary to ensure you receive a fair settlement, making your future much brighter.