As reported by the Journal of the American Medical Association, the top three reasons for death in America are: heart diseases, cancer, and medical carelessness. Statistics show that in 2012, more than $3 billion were spent on medical malpractice expenditure. This resulted in an average payout every 43 minutes. Shocking, right?
There are a few things that you can do so that you do not end up as one of the unfortunate people who have to deal with such negligence. You can do that by becoming the best medical malpractice lawyer so that you can protect yourself and your loved ones.
Similarly as with different sorts of attorneys, medical malpractice lawyers for the most part work in office settings, in spite of the fact that they may need to make a trip or two to meet with customers in their homes or in the medical clinic. Work hours will frequently fall in typical business hours, albeit a few cases will request more consideration and longer hours. Clinical malpractice legal advisors may work for private firms or insurance agencies.
Read this article to know about all the requirements needed to become a medical malpractice lawyer. Learn about what degree is required and the licensing needed to ensure if it is the right profession for you.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is a medical malpractice lawyer?
- 2 How do medical malpractice lawyers work?
- 3 How to become a medical malpractice lawyer?
- 4 What is a medical malpractice lawyer’s salary?
- 5 Do medical malpractice lawyers offer free consultation?
- 6 Top medical malpractice attorneys
- 7 Conclusion
What is a medical malpractice lawyer?
Malpractice is a word that is concerned with the professional impropriety committed by a healthcare worker or someone from the legal field. In the healthcare field, malpractice consists of the careless behaviour of doctors, dentists, therapists, nurses, technicians, and/or other healthcare workers.
Clinical malpractice lawyers fight claims for the benefit of their customers, who might be patients or enduring relatives of patients. These customers sue clinical experts for negligence and careless conduct. Medical malpractice attorneys spend significant time in offense claims brought by patients against doctors, medical attendants, or other medical services specialists. To successfully decide the benefits of each case and protect the privileges of their customer (either patients or social insurance suppliers), medical malpractice attorneys must have a strong knowledge of the clinical framework, its systems, and most basic instances of offense
In order to become a medical malpractice lawyer, you must also know where these cases can originate from, such as surgical mistakes, birth injuries, misdiagnosis, mistakes caused during anesthesia, unwanted and completely illogical delays in treating a condition that has been already diagnosed, failure to receive an informed consent form from a patient before treatment, and more.
How do medical malpractice lawyers work?
Medical malpractice legal advisors perform a large number of the everyday undertakings of a regular civil litigator. Civil litigators deal with situations where there’s a legal conflict yet no criminal accusations are included. Civil litigators invest their energy in talking with customers, leading examinations, drafting movements, creating preliminary procedures, and disputing cases.
Medical malpractice attorneys also perform extra tasks such as:
- Dealing with medical professionals to establish case theories, expert reports, and testimony to support the client’s case
- Taking depositions of medical experts, medical personnel, and other third parties
- Collecting and examining medical records
- Creating independent medical examinations (IMEs) to get an average evaluation of the client’s condition
- Performing medical research relating to the client’s situation
- Dealing with legal nurse consultants to examine case merits, go through medical records, and understand doctor’s notes
How to become a medical malpractice lawyer?
Following are the steps you should take in order to become a medical malpractice lawyer
Earn a bachelor’s degree
In order to become a medical malpractice lawyer, you have to first get a bachelor’s degree. This is an important prerequisite to get into a law school. Moreover, there is no specific field that you need to major in. However, most aspiring lawyers take up subjects like English, political science and history.
Take the LSAT
Once you have earned the bachelor’s degree, you need to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). Getting accepted into law school is a big deal! However, the entire process relies upon undergrad GPA and LSAT scores. The LSAT exam assesses a student’s basic reasoning, explanatory and rationale aptitudes. Most schools that are accredited by the American Bar Association will expect candidates to submit LSAT scores as a major aspect of the admissions cycle.
Attend law school
Now, you are required to attend law school ending with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree. This usually takes almost 3 years. During the initial years, students study courses focused on criminal and civil law, property, contracts, and torts which also includes medical malpractice law. During the next few years students complete elective courses in subjects like corporate tax collection, together with negotiation and trial advocacy, which clinical malpractice attorneys use while handling settlements or introducing cases to judges or juries.
Complete an internship
You need to complete an internship to get a firsthand experience in practicing law.
When taking up elective courses, you should select courses related to the medical field and law. The knowledge, espeience, and skills acquired in these courses will provide you with the framework to work as a medical malpractice lawyer after graduation.
Clear the bar exam
To get authorized, students must clear the bar exam in the state where they want to practice. The organization of this test contrasts in each state, however may require different long stretches of testing on both public and state laws.
Failure to pass the bar exam may stop you from practicing law altogether. Therefore, it is essential to prepare well for this exam. A few organizations offer multi-week study programs intended to assist students in clearing their bar exam.
What to do once you’ve completed the bar exam
Once the bar exam is cleared, students have the approval to practice in all fields of law. If you want to practice medical malpractice, you do so by joining a firm that deals with cases regarding clinical negligence. Clinical malpractice attorneys may begin as rookies in a legal firm, sharpening their aptitudes by taking testimony and arguing clinical malpractice cases before juries or authorities, before climbing in to fill in as lead counsel.
Get board approved certification
The American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys attests legal advisors who have in any event five years of experience spending significant time in clinical malpractice. This affirmation expects lawyers to record understanding and generous association in clinical malpractice cases over a minimum of three years.
Earn a Master’s degree
The last step to turning into a clinical malpractice attorney is to earn a Master of Laws degree. Some graduate schools offer Master of Laws degree programs in medical law. These projects give extra instruction about medical care and clinical misbehavior laws. They normally incorporate around 30 credit long stretches of study in courses like medical services installments, protection law, doctor guideline, government healthcare strategies, medical services business and money, regulatory law and medical care guidelines.
What is a medical malpractice lawyer’s salary?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual average salary of a medical malpractice attorney is $122,960. The accurate income varies on the basis of the field of expertise, the number of cases the attorney handles, and the experience that the attorney has.
Just like any other lawyer, most clinical malpractice lawyers charge based on a contingency fee which makes the administrations of a lawyer moderate to the individuals who can’t bear the cost of forthright installments. Under an unexpected charge course of action, the attorney takes a level of the offended party’s net recuperation. While this may sound rewarding, remember that 30 states have a cap on the harms that can be granted in a clinical malpractice suit. This restricts the sum you possibly could be paid.
Do medical malpractice lawyers offer free consultation?
Every lawyer is supposed to provide almost 50 hours of pro bono services yearly. This means that they are required to provide free consultation to those who need it. Thus, in order to find a lawyer who does that in your area, you need to do a lot of research. Contact different private NGOs or government organizations that could be of some help to you. Such organizations often have pro bono lawyers working with them. Thus, you have a high chance of receiving help from here.
Top medical malpractice attorneys
Selecting the right medical malpractice attorney can be quite a daunting task. You need to do proper research before you select one for yourself. The best medical lawyers vary from state to state. Some of the top medical malpractice attorneys in USA are:
- Mark A. Abramson – New Hampshire
- Robert B. Adelman – Connecticut
- Peter J. Ainsworth Massachusetts
- Todd Alley – District of Columbia
- Laurie A. Amell – Florida
- Charla G. Aldon – Texas
- Lisa G. Arrowood – Massachusetts
- Albert B. Aquilla – New York
- Dov Apfel – Maryland
- Rudwin Ayala – Florida
Becoming a successful medical malpractice lawyer involves earning a bachelor’s degree, taking the LSAT, attending law school, and completing an internship, passing the bar exam, actively working as a medical malpractice lawyer, and getting board certified and earning a Master of Laws degree.