What are my rights if I was taken off a medication by a neurologist and became suicidally depressed for months?

I was later told by a psychiatrist that my depression was most likely caused by going off the medication and that she would never have advised me to do that. Is this too thin for a malpractice case?

Asked on March 6, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Colorado

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).

The statement by the psychiatrist that your" depression was most likely caused by going off the medication and the psychiatrist would never have advised you to do that." may support your claim of medical malpractice if that statement is in a written medical report.

Prior to filing a lawsuit against the neurologist, it may be possible to settle the case with the neurologist's malpractice insurance carrier.  Your claim filed with the malpractice insurance carrier should include your medical bills, medical reports (especially the report from the psychiatrist) and documentation of any wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your suicidal depression 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 neurologist's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the neurologist's malpractice insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the neurologist. 

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


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