What are my rights if I had surgery 9 years ago and am now just finding out that the surgery I had has cause me more life threating problems?

I was never informed that this doctor caused other woman the same problems. After 9 years it was discovered I still have stitches inside my body. What can I do My family has suffered along with me. There has to be someone that can help me.

Asked on August 1, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Maine

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Medical malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable medical practitioner in the community would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm).

Maine has a 3 year statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit in a medical malpractice case; however if a foreign item was unintentionally left in the body, the 3 year period doesn't begin to run until the discovery of the foreign item.

Prior to filing a lawsuit, it may be possible to settle the case with the doctor's malpractice insurance carrier.  Your claim filed with the malpractice insurance carrier should include your medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury/condition and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.

If the case is settled with the doctor's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the malpractice insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the doctor.

If the case is NOT settled with the malpractice insurance carrier, your lawsuit for negligence against the doctor must be flied prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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