Vox Populi

Posts Tagged ‘Medicine’

How expensive is it to file a Medical Malpractice claim?

In broken tort reform, debunking the myth, Get the Ca$h, ideology, medical malpractice, undo tort reform on May 9, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Inherent in any claim is the cost of bringing the action.  Who is going to pay is the question, cutting both ways, in every

The Barrister's Dream

The Barrister’s Dream (Photo credit: Bonnetmaker)

case.  Will the medical practitioner/institution pay its fair share for the pain, suffering and death it/they inflicted?  Will the plaintiff pay the cost of bringing suit in an environment where the odds are greatly stacked against her?  The real answer is too often on the latter.  The plaintiff, hurt, injured or dead (the survivors seeking justice) will, all too often, bear the costs of trying to obtain justice.

Please be advised that under Michigan’s ethical rules, all costs of litigation (copies, postage, deposition fees, expert fees) are the ultimate responsibility of the client, even under contingent fee arrangements.   All of our clients sign written detailed fee agreements (citation).

So, you walk into a Med Mal attorney‘s office, or are wheeled in or such, and immediately you are, gently it is hoped, brought up to realize a strict and brutalizing reality: if the stars do no align, you will be the one on the hook for the pleasure of the experience.

It is well thought, although incorrect, that the plaintiff attorney will bear the costs of bringing suit.  With that line of reasoning, the argument runs like this: since the costs of litigation are high, and the plaintiff’s attorney takes such cases on a contingency basis, then the plaintiff attorney will only take the “valid” or “non-frivolous” cases as the plaintiff attorney will be on the hook for all of the costs of bringing the case (copies, postage, deposition fees, expert fees).

That commonly held belief is incorrect.  Patients are victimized by their physicians and then by the judiciary.  Once bitten, twice bit.

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George Bush Half-Truths to Control Courts: Discussions Medical Liability Reform | Political Video | George W. Bush Video Archive

In broken tort reform, debunking the myth, medical malpractice on December 11, 2009 at 10:22 pm

Ahh, the good ole days when boys who owned wanna-be ranches were able to pull the wool over everyone’s eyes:  sure there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, read-my-lips-no taxes, tort reform will save the economy, health care costs will be lowered by preventing injured people from being able to go to court…  Scary bedtime stories, no?  Well, seems Bush really was a true believer, or at least he seemed to believe everything he said.  Too bad no one else does anymore…  For those of you who don’t believe me, check out the creepy video below.  Can anyone give a shout-out to the white supremacist look-alikes in the crowd here?  That ought to tell you a bit about this clip before you even start. (Cause every good ole white boy knows that the women, poor, injured and ethnic minorities have no place in the courts, big ole important places where the “real” business is done right?)

Is this a KKK rally?  Just curious.

Based on a tip from Tom Baker’s book The Medical Malpractice Myth,” I found some video of then President Bush (43) arguing the following:

Many of the costs that we’re talking about don’t start in an examining room or an operating room. They start in a courtroom. (Applause.) What’s happening all across this country is that lawyers are filing baseless suits against hospitals and doctors. That’s just a plain fact. (Applause.) And they’re doing it for a simple reason. They know the medical liability system is tilted in their favor. (Applause.) Jury awards in medical liability cases have skyrocketed in recent years. That means every claim filed by a personal injury lawyer brings the chance of a huge payoff or a profitable settlement out of court. That’s what that means. Doctors and hospitals realize this. They know it’s expensive to fight a lawsuit, even if it doesn’t have any merit. And because the system is so unpredictable, there is a constant risk of being hit by a massive jury award. So doctors end up paying tens of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of dollars to settle claims out of court, even when they know they have done nothing wrong.

He was, as we shall see, exactly, oppositely wrong.

For live footage, click the following: George Bush Discusses Medical Liability Reform | Political Video | George W. Bush Video Archive.

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