Common Questions About Medical Malpractice Settlements

Medical malpractice cases are often complex. Still, many result in favorable settlements without having to go through a lengthy trial. A well-prepared case strategy can make all the difference in laying the groundwork for a successful settlement.

Below are answers to frequently asked questions about medical malpractice settlements. As always, please consult with a lawyer about your specific case.

What is the medical malpractice settlement process?

The first major step in a medical malpractice case involves discovery. All parties will conduct their own investigations, enlist experts to review the evidence as needed and gather the evidence necessary to build their case.
After discovery, it’s common to pursue alternative dispute resolution, whether mediation or arbitration. Mediation involves a third-party neutral who facilitates settlement discussions. Arbitration is a private trial held before an arbitrator. The outcome of arbitration gives the parties a better picture of how a judge or jury would rule.

Which element of malpractice is hardest to prove?

Proving negligence is often a challenging hurdle. Medical providers are held to a professional standard of care, which means the same care that a competent provider in their field would have provided under the same circumstances. Because medicine is so specialized, there are often highly nuanced standards of care for each field. That’s why expert witnesses are so critical in proving negligence.

How long does it take to negotiate a settlement?

It depends on the nature and complexity of the case. It may take months or years to get a fair settlement for larger, more complex cases.

How are medical malpractice settlements determined?

Factors that influence a settlement include:

  • The strength of your case
  • The amount of damages (compensation) you could likely get at trial
  • The legal expenses the defendant would have to incur to litigate the case

With a strong case, the defendant will be more motivated to reach a favorable settlement and avoid going to trial. Ultimately, however, you as the plaintiff and client have the final say in deciding whether to agree to a settlement.

Get Answers To Your Questions About A Medical Negligence Case

If you suspect that you have a case for medical negligence, reach out to our legal team at Menzer Law. We have offices in Seattle, Washington, and Hawaii. Our lawyers are highly qualified in medical malpractice, one of the most complex areas of personal injury law.

Call 206.903.1818 in Washington or 808.446.7374 in Hawaii to get started with a free consultation.