What Are “Damages” in a Malpractice Case?

If you were injured in a medical malpractice case, you have the right to sue the medical provider for damages. The legal term “damages” often refers to the compensation you can receive in your malpractice claim. But the term does involve more. Please know that you should consult with a skilled malpractice attorney today if you were injured because of a physician’s negligence.

Definition of Damages

In the pure sense of the word, “damages” refer to harm you suffered from a doctor’s malpractice. This harm includes physical, emotional, and economic harm. Your specific harm can also range from temporary setbacks to permanent injuries to even death. It is sometimes helpful if you think of damages as everything you lost because of a medical provider’s negligence. Losses can include:

  • Money,
  • Health, and
  • Life.

Damages in Proving Malpractice

To succeed in a malpractice case, you’ll have to prove four elements. These are:

  1. A medical professional owed you a duty of care,
  2. The professional breached that duty,
  3. You suffered an injury because of the breach, and
  4. Your injury resulted in damages.

In this context, damages refers to a specific component within a malpractice cause of action. You usually have to prove damages in the context of a dollar amount, and this will often include an amount for both economic and non-economic damages.

Economic vs. Non-Economic Damages

A case of malpractice usually results in the victim suffering both:

  • Economic damages, and
  • Non-economic damages.

Economic damages are those to which it is relatively easy to attach a dollar amount. Examples include:

  • Medical bills,
  • Lost wages, and
  • Lost earning capacity.

Non-economic damages are those which do not necessarily involve out-of-pocket expenses. Examples include:

  • Pain and suffering,
  • Emotional distress,
  • Inconvenience, and
  • Loss of life enjoyment.

The specific value of your total damages will often depend on:

  • The severity of your injury,
  • The duration of your harm, and
  • The length of your medical treatment.

Proving Damages

There are many ways to help prove the extent of your damages in a malpractice claim. Reliable pieces of evidence include:

  • Medical records,
  • Photos of your injuries,
  • Witness statements, and
  • Testimony from medical experts,

A skilled medical malpractice attorney will know what evidence to raise to help prove your case. A malpractice lawyer also proves invaluable in helping you gather evidence. This is especially true when it comes to testimony from experts.

Contact Otorowski Morrow & Golden, PLLC

Please know that our firm is here to help if you suffered an injury because of a medical professional’s malpractice. Otorowski Morrow & Golden, PLLC provides free consultations to all our potential clients. The attorneys at our law firm also have over 120 years of combined experience representing injured parties in medical malpractice cases. They never back down to insurers and fight for their clients’ interests every step of the way. Do yourself a favor and contact them now for the quality legal representation you deserve.

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