can I sue a hospital if they let me fall as I was released?

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can I sue a hospital if they let me fall as I was released?

I was discharged from the emergency room and no one walked out with me, so I had to walk by myself. I passed out in the lobby. I went to the ER for passing out.

Asked on October 29, 2016 under Personal Injury, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

They would only be liable if you can show that you had a medical issue or were in such condition at the time that you should not have been allowed to walk yourself out: there is no law requiring all patients to be escorted out, and many times, ER patients are not escorted out of the hospital. Only if medically you should have been walked out this time might the hospital be liable. 
Furthermore, you can only sue for your actual medical costs caused by the fall (out of pocket costs--that is, those not paid by insurance or medicaid), lost wages due to the fall (if any), and "pain and suffering" for significant, long lasting life impairment or disability resulting from the fall. If your injuries were slight and costs low, it would *not* be worth the cost of lawsuit, since you'd have to pay for a medical expert to testify how this was the hospital's fault and as to the extent of your injuries, and such experts can be expensive. (A court will not accept your layperson opinion as to these things.)


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