Deaths caused by medical negligence
If a loved one has died as a result of negligent medical care then you have the right to know why and what caused their death. Finding this out can help a bereaved family start the long process of accepting their loved one’s death.
Relatives often report to us that the main motivation behind seeking a resolution of their concerns is the need to prevent the same mistakes from happening again in the future.
Cases involving a fatal outcome can include:
- Wrongful diagnosis of a medical condition
- Delays in diagnosis
- Failures to identify and treat symptoms
- Misinterpretation of scans or tests
- Medical processes not being followed properly
- Failures to identify underlying issues which cause further complications, e.g. cardiac arrest or sepsis
In many cases, the negligent act ultimately responsible for your loved one’s death can occur sometime before they have actually passed away and you may not become aware of the negligence until after their death.
Making a fatal medical negligence claim
If a loved one has died as a result of negligence, a family member or executor to the deceased’s Will may pursue a medical negligence claim.
Medical negligence is generally a broad and complicated area of law. Medical experts are required to make a case, and from a legal point of view, a solicitor acting for you will need to understand the areas of medicine involved to know which experts to engage and what to look for.
There are various types of compensation claim that can be made in the event of a loss of a loved one. Certain persons may recover an award of damages for bereavement. There may also be a claim for damages for any pain or suffering that your loved one experienced prior to their death.
In all cases, there is a three year statute of limitations from the date of death in which to bring a claim of medical negligence, so it is important to act quickly.
If successful, you will be awarded compensation and this can include an award for:
- Financial losses;
- Finance to provide care or assistance to dependents;
- Reimbursement of funeral expenses; and/or
- Compensation to reflect the pain and suffering of the deceased.
However, you may also be able to ask that an apology be made to you, you can request an explanation about the ways in which procedures have been or will be changed to avoid the same things from happening again, and we may also be able to set-up a meeting where such reassurances can be explained.
How we can help with fatal medical negligence claims
At Nelsons, our expert Medical Negligence team takes great pride in our approach in dealing with these much specialised, often highly complex cases with care and compassion in every aspect.
If you or family members of the deceased person were financially dependent upon them or they provided services to the family, e.g. care or assistance with day to day living, then we can assess whether a claim for dependency can be made. We are also able to work out who is eligible to claim compensation and the value of any claim.
It is of course very important that those who have been left behind can achieve financial security and we can help at this very distressing and difficult time.
Our team in Derby, Leicester and Nottingham are ranked in Tier One of the independently-researched Legal 500, and are also recommended by Chambers and Partners as one of the top teams of specialists in the country.
If you have any questions in relation to fatal medical negligence claims, please contact us to discuss how we can help on 0800 024 1976, through our online enquiry form or by using our online chat.
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