Residents in the Lake Charles area may have sought professional medical care for various injuries and illnesses over the years. In some cases, a patient will face additional harm due to a failure to provide proper care. This poor medical treatment is often caused by medical negligence on the part of a doctor, nurse, hospital worker or other medical provider.

Filing a medical malpractice suit can help prevent the negligent medical provider from providing below-standard medical care to others. The process for filing such a suit can be challenging, but could prove to be well worth it in the end. In Louisiana, the statute of limitations requires you to file your suit within one year of when the injury occurred.

If you or a family member has suffered as a result of poor medical care, mistaken diagnosis, a breach of doctor-patient confidentiality, or lack of consent, you may be able to file a successful suit. After contacting the medical professional involved to see if there is anything he can do to remedy the problem, you may want to contact the medical licensing board to discipline the practitioner or guide you further in the process.

Your next step will be to file a certificate of merit to show that your case is valid. This certificate can be obtained by contacting another doctor or another medical expert to review your case. This other physician can then certify that the negligent medical professional did not adhere to the standard accepted in the field of medicine and that this negligence caused your injury. Once the doctor verifies that your case has merit, you may file the certificate.

Many medical malpractice cases are settled out of court, and it may be in your best interest to do so. However, if you have a strong case, you may be able to seek a larger settlement in court. Hiring an attorney to go over your options with you may be in your best interest.

Source: FindLaw, “First Steps in a Medical Malpractice Case,” accessed on Aug. 24, 2015