Medical Malpractice occurs when individuals and families have been injured because of the negligent conduct of healthcare providers who made a medical error. If a doctor, nurse, hospital, or other healthcare provider harmed you or your loved one due to negligence, you likely were a victim of medical malpractice.
The law is complex, and even after researching yourself, sometimes it’s hard to tell if what happened to you qualifies as medical malpractice. As a registered nurse, I will understand better than other attorneys in my field what happened to you, how your injury is affecting your life, and whether your medical providers can be held legally responsible.
I know meeting with an attorney can feel stressful—we’re talking about your life and your future health, as well as a negative event that harmed you. Preparing ahead of time in these 4 simple ways will help you feel calmer and remember everything you mean to tell me. Taking the steps listed below will also insure I have the most complete information right away, helping me to advise you as to whether or not you have a case, and what my recommendation is for how you should proceed to get the best result for your unique situation.
1. Make an Appointment
In Georgia, a medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within 2 years from the date of the injury. However, there are exceptions, including if the injury occurred to a child under the age of 5. There’s a lot to do before filing, so it’s important to meet with an attorney as soon as possible.
I offer free consultations to anyone seeking guidance about whether a bad medical event that led to an injury was medical malpractice. Call my office at 478-477-9000 to set up an appointment for us to discuss your situation.
2. Collect your Documents
Before our appointment, take some time to gather all the documents related to the event that occurred and the harm it caused you. The list below will get you started.
Your social security number, patient ID number, and any other numbers that would identify you in your medical providers’ records
Copies of your medical records, test results, X-rays, medical notes, MRI results, blood work, and any other results or reports relevant to your injury and how your health has changed because of it
Copies of your medical bills, payment records, and insurance statements
A list of all the medical professionals involved in your situation, including doctors, nurses, radiologists, anesthesiologists, therapists, and the hospitals, clinics, or other medical institutions where your injury occurred and that has been treating you since
All communications with your health insurance company about your medical claim, including emails, letters, voicemails, text messages, and any notes you took during phone calls
Paystubs and any proof of lost wages, including W-2 documents and emails or texts with your employer
Information about any medications you are taking or treatments or therapy you are currently receiving as a result of the injury you suffered
Copies of any additional notices, letters, emails, or other communications you’ve received about your injury or current medical condition
3. Take Notes on your Experiences
It’s important for me to hear your story in your own words, but when we’re talking about a difficult and even traumatic experience, it can be hard to remember everything that happened. I always encourage the people coming to see me to write down what happened to them in the order it happened. For most of us, it’s easier to remember all the particulars and details surrounding our negative experiences when we aren’t stressed or rushed, and have lots of time to get all the pieces down on paper in the right order.
If you aren’t sure if something’s relevant, write it down anyway. Because I’m a registered nurse as well as a medical malpractice attorney, I’ll be able to help you figure out if it relates to your injury or not. Also write down what occurred after the bad medical event that happened, including when you learned about the injury, who you spoke to about it, and anything you want me to know about how this has affected your life since. As you tell me your story, your notes will help you get the most out of your consultation.
4. Make a List of your Questions
Although you’re welcome to call my office with your questions at any time, it’ll be much easier and faster for us to be able to talk about them face to face. I’ve made a list of questions here to get you started on your own list.