Can You Sue for Wrongful Death?

When a loved one dies it is a time of great emotion, and the survivors need time to process what has happened, to grieve, and to pull their lives back together. With all that’s going on, it is easy to forget about the circumstances of the loved one’s death, and whether it could have been avoided. Sometimes there are people or organizations who have at least some responsibility for the death, because of recklessness or negligence. These are called wrongful death cases. Wrongful death can be caused by health care malpractice, product deficiencies, a crime (homicide), intoxication, unsafe work conditions, and various issues connected to vehicle accidents, to name some common ones. If it can be proven that recklessness or negligence played a part in a death, the victim’s family can sue for wrongful death and the estate of the deceased may be able to sue for other damages. However, Georgia law specifies who may sue and the nature of damages that may be recovered. There are many factors to consider before you start a wrongful death legal action, and the best course is to get expert advice from an attorney who is experienced in dealing with wrongful death cases. In Georgia, that means contacting Michael W. McElroy, P.C., for a free...
Medical Malpractice and You

Medical Malpractice and You

There’s a famous quote about medicine that says, to paraphrase, a 99 percent success rate is very good in many areas of life, including school, but if you have a 99 percent success rate in surgery it means that some of your patients will die or have severe complications because of your mistakes. Mistakes can be costly, even life-threatening when it comes to medicine. Doctors, hospitals, and health care providers can make mistakes that have grave consequences, and our legal system has provided a way for patients and their families to get compensation for those mistakes. However, it’s not easy to win a medical malpractice case. The burden of proof is on the patient, and malpractice is a hard thing to prove. There are some important aspects to consider before you proceed with a malpractice case. The basic definition of medical malpractice is that a person was given substandard care because of negligence, ignorance, or lack of action on the part of medical personnel. Also, and this is very important, the substandard care must have caused significant harm to the patient. If your grandfather stubs his toe in the hospital because a nurse was watching TV in his room and didn’t help him get out of bed, it might fit the substandard care criteria, but it certainly didn’t cause him significant harm. The majority of medical malpractice cases that go to court end with no payment to the injured party or their survivors. That’s why if you or someone you love has received substandard medical care that resulted in significant harm, you need expert legal assistance to determine if...
Get Expert Legal Advice After An Accident

Get Expert Legal Advice After An Accident

There are more than five million automobile accidents in the United States annually, according to recent statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Almost two million drivers or passengers involved in those accidents receive serious injuries. To be a party in a traffic accident is a shattering thing, especially if it is more than just a minor, “fender bender” type of event. Accidents happen suddenly, and there is often confusion about how they happened and what actually occurred. Besides the initial shock and trauma, there are often other medical problems that crop up as time goes on. It can be a disturbing, scary time as the full effects of the accident begin to sink in. This is exactly why accident victims need the services of an experienced attorney like Michael W. McElroy, P.C. A top flight personal injury attorney can help you navigate the confusing landscape of legal, insurance, and medical issues that result from a serious traffic accident. Dealing with insurance companies in particular can be challenging for the layperson, and it’s advisable to get expert legal advice before you agree to any kind of financial settlement. There are many cases where victims have agreed to quick settlements to cover their initial medical bills, but the money is not enough to cover long term treatment for ongoing medical issues that result from the accident. If you or someone you love has been involved in a traffic accident, you need expert advice to help you get the best legal outcome. In Georgia, that means contacting Michael W. McElroy, P.C., for a free...
Medical Mistakes — More Common Than You Think

Medical Mistakes — More Common Than You Think

If someone asked you the top three causes of death in the U.S .each year, would you know the answer? Many of us would probably say heart disease, which is actually Number 1 on the list. A lot of people would know that cancer is a leading killer, and they’d be right — it’s the Number 2 cause of death each year. Do you know the third leading cause of death? The answer might surprise you — it’s medical mistakes. It’s not well known, and in fact there have been few studies on it, but Professor Martin Makary of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine analyzed the data and found that more than 250,000 people die in the US each year because of medical mistakes. You probably didn’t know that because medical mistakes are not commonly listed on death certificates, and they are the source of the statistics. The people filling out the death certificates use terms like “heart attack” or “respiratory failure”; instead of “medical error”. Doctors are not in the habit of admitting mistakes, for a variety of reasons. The biggest one is that they could be open to malpractice lawsuits if they admit they erred, but there’s also the issue of the doctor/patient relationship, and the trust involved. Patients need to feel trust in their medical team, especially when their life is in danger, and admitting mistakes may dames that trust. However, mistakes do happen, and they are more common than most of us think. There are mistakes in diagnosis and treatment caused by miscommunication, ignorance, equipment failure, and dozens of other reasons. If you or...
How to Avoid Medical Misdiagnosis

How to Avoid Medical Misdiagnosis

For many years, doctors occupied an exalted place because of their education and training, and their opinions were accepted without question by patients. That has changed now that people can get good medical knowledge on the Internet, and more people are willing to question or disagree with their doctors than ever before. However, there are still plenty of people who are reluctant to question a doctor’s diagnosis, even if they have a good reason for feeling that it’s wrong. The problem is that doctors most definitely can be wrong. Despite their education and training, they can make a mistake in diagnosing an ailment, and those mistakes can cause suffering or even death. There are thousands of misdiagnosed cases every year, and many times they are caused by poor communication between doctor and patient. To avoid a misdiagnosis, it is important for patients to communicate effectively with their doctor. Whenever you meet with your doctor, open up completely about your condition. Give the doctor every detail about your symptoms, the medications you’re taking, your family history — even things like your diet and exercise habits. Never underestimate what a doctor will need to know for a correct diagnosis — tell more, rather than less. Never shrug off as “not important” a symptom or detail about your condition. Let the doctor decide what’s important and what is not. Ask as many questions as you can to make sure you understand your condition and treatment completely. Speak up! it may help you avoid a misdiagnosis. If you feel that you’ve been misdiagnosed, you may need to see a malpractice attorney. Michael W. McElroy, P.C., you will get the benefit of legal counsel that is skilled in medical malpractice work. We can’t...
Timing is Important in Medical Malpractice Cases

Timing is Important in Medical Malpractice Cases

Many legal cases start with a clear and definite incident that has happened. If a car knocks you down when you’re trying to cross the street, you know exactly what happened and when (or you have witnesses who do). With medical malpractice cases, however, the timing is not always so clear. You can be receiving treatment over a long period of time and not be aware that there is a malpractice issue. Medical errors in diagnosis, treatment, or surgery may not surface for months, or even years. It’s important to act on your suspicion when you suspect medical malpractice. Many patients (most often the elderly) put doctors on a pedestal and do not question their diagnoses even when they feel something is not right w/their body and/or with what the doctor had told them. It’s important to act quickly, as there are statutes of limitations on medical claims which vary from state to state. Generally speaking, you must file a claim within two years in Georgia. However, the time or event which triggers the running of the statute of limitations may vary and may not be clear. For these reasons it is important to speak up to your medical practitioner about any complaints you may have. Don’t be afraid to explain your symptoms in detail, and even offer your opinion on what may have gone wrong; accurate patient feedback is an important part of the treatment process. Make sure you communicate your concerns with urgency, so the doctor pays full attention to the matter. If you do that and the medical professional doesn’t give you the satisfaction you need,...