What are my rights regarding my late wife’s undiagnosed heart condition?

My wife died 5 days after an appointment with her primary care physician. The Medical Examiner’s report found the cause of death to be hypertensive heart disease; and stated that there was no clinical diagnosis of hypertensive heart disease. In the previous 10 months, my wife lost 1/3 rd of her body weight due to cachechsia — yet the doctor never referred her to a cardiologist. There were 4 local who attorneys declined to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit. I eventually learned that at least 2 of them did so because the doctor’s husband is a clerk to a local judge and they did not want to adversely influence their working relationship. The statue of limitations will expire in about 3 months. Can I file a complaint with no attorney?

Asked on October 27, 2015 under Malpractice Law, New York

Answers:

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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Sorry to hear about your wife.
Medical malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to execise 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).
Since the statute of limitations is approaching, you should file the complaint (lawsuit) as soon as possible.  You can file the (complaint) lawsuit without an attorney.


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