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Frequently Asked Questions: Medical Malpractice

San Jose Medical Malpractice & Medical Negligence Claims

How do you prove a medical malpractice claim? In California, the plaintiff (person bringing a lawsuit against the doctor/hospital) must prove the following:

  • The doctor had an obligation to the plaintiff (for example, the plaintiff was actually a patient of the doctor)
  • The doctor breached that obligation in some way
  • The plaintiff was injured
  • The doctor's breach of obligation was the proximate (probable) cause of the patient's injuries

How do I know what my medical malpractice claim is worth? Without a complete investigation and evaluation of medical bills and the extent of physical and emotional injury, it is impossible to say what a malpractice claim may be worth. However, San Jose medical malpractice claims are typically more significant when serious injury, disfigurement or disability are the result of the doctor's misconduct.

What types of monetary damages can I recover? Depending on the particular situation, a medical malpractice victim may be able to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages from missed work, loss of potential earnings, future medical expenses, pain and suffering, emotional damages, and possibly more.

Will I be able to receive punitive damages? When intentional misconduct or criminal actions are involved in a medical malpractice case, it may be possible for a victim to recover punitive damages. This is money paid by the defendant imposed as punishment for his or her actions. However, these cases are rare and in California the plaintiff (injured patient) may need to gain Court approval to seek punitive damages in the first place.

What is a settlement? In a medical malpractice case, a settlement is an out-of-court agreement made by both parties to resolve a case. Most often, the defendant (doctor or hospital) will agree to pay the plaintiff (injured party) a specific amount of money in order to avoid a civil court trial. A settlement will end a case as the plaintiff will therefore take no further action against the defendant.

How much will your firm's services cost me? When you work with a San Jose medical malpractice lawyer at Accident Lawyers, you do not pay any legal fees unless we win your case. Unless we recover a settlement or secure a jury award on your behalf, you pay no out of pocket legal fees.

To learn more about medical malpractice in San Jose, contact an attorney at our offices today.