What’s the Difference? – Wrongful Death vs. Medical Malpractice
It can be difficult to understand the differences between a medical malpractice claim and a wrongful death claim.
If there’s a death relating to medical care, ALL medical malpractice cases are wrongful death cases. BUT, all wrongful death cases are NOT medical malpractice cases.
Medical malpractice is an error on the part of health-care providers that results in an injury to a patient.
According to the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys, “Medical malpractice occurs when a hospital, doctor or other health care professional, through a negligent act or omission, causes an injury to a patient. The negligence might be the result of errors in diagnosis, treatment, aftercare or health management.”
Under the law, the claim must have the following characteristics in order to be considered a medical malpractice claim:
- A violation of the standard of care
- An injury was caused by the negligence
- The injury resulted in significant damages
A wrongful death claim is a claim against an individual who can be held liable for the death of the victim.
The Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School explains, “A civil action against someone who can be held liable for a death. Any tortious injury that caused someone’s death may be grounds for a wrongful death action. Under the common law, a claim for wrongful death had to be brought by the decedent’s survivors (usually close relatives only); modern wrongful death statutes have modified that rule.”
Words from Attorney Allen Tittle
Contact an Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If your loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice or wrongful death as a result of negligence, do NOT wait to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney.
Due to the statute of limitations for medical malpractice and wrongful death, it is important that you start the process to seek justice right away.
To learn more, feel free to download a FREE copy of our Medical Malpractice Guide or fill out our contact form for a free, no obligation, initial consultation. Or, feel free to call our office at (216)-677-3671 to talk with an experienced team of medical malpractice attorneys.