Archives for : Medical Malpractice

Are There Limits To Pain And Suffering Damages In California?

Under California personal injury law, pain and suffering in relation to an injury is owed compensation.  You are eligible for pain and suffering damages for both physical and mental injuries. If you have been injured in California and you experienced pain and suffering as a result, an experienced Santa Rosa personal injury attorney can help you get the compensation you rightfully deserve.

Understanding the Basics of Non-Economic Damages

Damages for pain and suffering are classified as a non-economic damages. This is in contrast to something like a hospital bill, which is classified as an economic damage. The difference is important because non-economic damages are inherently difficult to quantify. It is easy to look at a hospital bill, see that it cost four thousand dollars, and determine that those four thousand dollars need to be compensated. But, how do you determine the correct amount of money to compensate ‘pain’? Pain and suffering is very real and it definitely deserves full compensation, but the difficulty of quantifying the pain can make it difficult for injury victims to get what they fairly legally deserve. The subjective nature of non-economic damages makes an experienced personal injury attorney indispensable. You need an attorney who can make a strong case to get you every dollar you deserve.

California Medical Malpractice Pain and Suffering Limits

The California state legislature passed the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act (MICRA) which limits compensation for pain and suffering in medical malpractice cases to 250,000 dollars. There is no cap on economic damages. But, in a California medical malpractice case, the maximum amount a court can award an injured victim for pain and suffering is 250,000 dollars. This is even true if the actual pain and suffering should be worth more than that amount. That dollar figure probably seems like an arbitrary amount, because in fact, it is an arbitrary amount. There have been attempts in recent years to get the legislature to raise the cap, but they have been unsuccessful thus far.  In 2014, proposition 46, which would have raised the cap, lost at the ballot box. If you have any questions about pain and suffering damages in California, an experienced personal injury attorney can help answer them for you.

Contact An Experienced Santa Rosa Personal Injury Attorney

Getting full and fair compensation for your pain and suffering is deserved. Unfortunately, in certain types of California personal injury cases (medical malpractice) your pain and suffering damages may run up against a legislated limits for damages. An experienced Santa Rosa personal injury attorney at the Teal Law Group can analyze your case and help you recover every penny for pain and suffering that is possible. Your pain and suffering is still eligible for significant compensation regardless of any limits. Contact our offices today to learn more about your legal options.

Santa Rosa Office: 707-525-1212    Sacramento Office: 916-448-1010

Delayed Diagnosis of Cancer

Finding out that you have cancer is a devastating, life-changing event. However, discovering that some events regarding your specific cancer could have been avoided had your healthcare provider ordered the necessary tests can be even more devastating. Contact an experienced Sacramento delayed diagnosis attorney if you or a loved one received a delayed diagnosis of cancer that could have prevented other problems had you been diagnosed sooner.

What Leads to Delayed Diagnosis of Cancer/Failure to Diagnose Cancer

Medical malpractice cases are often the result of negligence, such as failing to remove foreign objects in the body during surgery.  On the other hand, medical malpractice cases are also the result of misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or failure to diagnose debilitating or invasive diseases such as cancer. Healthcare providers’ failure to order the correct tests, failing to read and respond to test results, failing to refer a client to a specialist when needed, as well as failing to respond to patient’s inquiries and symptoms can lead to delayed diagnosis or failure to diagnose cancer. In some cases age plays a factor in healthcare providers’ failing to perform necessary tests or scans, even when there is a family history for a specific cancer.

The Dangers of Delayed or Undiagnosed Cancer

When a healthcare professional delays or fails to diagnose cancer, this can cause irreparable harm. If cancer is not diagnosed in time, the cancer can continue to spread and grow, and treatment that would have been effective within the first stages of cancer, may no longer be effective. After all, the longer a diagnosis is delayed or goes unnoticed, the more likely it is for the cancer to progress and reach a non-treatable stage. Due to these reasons, obtaining legal advice is of the utmost importance.

Contact an Attorney with Experience in Medical Malpractice         

Being told that you have cancer is devastating, but learning that your cancer diagnosis was delayed or overlooked is even more troubling. If you believe a healthcare professional missed or ignored warning signs of cancer, you should contact an attorney immediately. Here, at Teal Law Group, we will fight for your rights. Contact our office for an initial consultation, in Santa Rosa at 707-525-1212 or in Sacramento at 916-448-1010 or contact us online, and let us do the rest.


Negligence and Shoulder Dystocia

Expecting a child is one of the most exciting moments for most parents, and the day of delivery can be pure excitement. However, new parents may find that they are fearful and overwhelmed when they learn that the delivery will not go as easily as planned. You expect for your healthcare provider to provide excellent service at this point.  Unfortunately, some fall below the proper standard of care. If you or a loved one have experienced injuries to your child during the course of birth and delivery, it is important to contact an experienced Sacramento birth injuries attorney to determine whether you have a case.

What Causes Shoulder Dystocia?

Shoulder Dystocia occurs during labor, when after the delivery of the head, the shoulders of the infant cannot pass and requires significant manipulation to pass through the mother’s pelvic region. Shoulder dystocia usually affects larger babies or mothers who have a small pelvic region. In some cases, fetal demise can occur if not handled properly. For this procedure doctors use either forceps or a “vacuum” to extract the baby. However, if the doctor uses excessive force when the baby’s shoulders are stuck, the infant can develop shoulder dystocia which could result in Erb’s Palsy. Erb’s Palsy is a condition that can cause paralysis and often requires rehabilitative therapy and surgery to correct.

Healthcare providers who are negligent, whose carelessness or recklessness fall below the requisite standard of care, are liable for birth injuries resulting from those actions. You may seek compensation for all expenses related to birth injuries of your child. That is why it is important to seek legal advice.

Need Legal Advice about Birth Injuries? Call Teal Law Group

Realizing that your newborn child has birth injuries due to the negligence of a medical provider is devastating. However, you do not have to go through the frustration alone. Contact Teal Law Group to determine the best strategies for your case so that you can receive the best outcome possible for you and your family. We are here to fight on your behalf. Contact our office today for an initial consultation. Call 707-525-1212 in Santa Rosa or 916-448-1010 in Sacramento.

You Have a Right to Your Medical Records

When choosing a new medical healthcare provider, one of the first questions on the new patient form pertains to information in your medical records from the previous doctor. You will need to complete a consent form to release your medical records from your previous doctor to your new healthcare provider. However, medical professionals are not the only ones who should have a copy of your medical records; you should have a copy as well. Having a copy of your medical records can not only save your life, but they may also be used in bringing a medical malpractice suit against a healthcare professional.

Your Medical Records and HIPPA

Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) gives patients the right to obtain a copy of medical records from any of your medical providers as well as the right to review and inspect them if you so choose. When seeking your medical records, no provider is to deny you a copy of your records except in limited circumstances, such as: if the records are psychotherapy notes; information the provider believes could reasonably endanger your life or someone else’s; or if the information is being gathered in anticipation of a lawsuit. By law, medical providers are release copies of your medical records within 30 days of your request. Furthermore, you cannot be denied a copy of your records because you owe money to the medical provider. A provider can, however, charge a reasonable cost for copying and mailing your medical records.

Medical records are created by your physician and they contain information about your healthcare professional’s observations of you, surgical information, as well as treatment plan information that your provider has deemed necessary. Your medical record can help a malpractice case by showing that there was a delay in treatment or to prove that the treatment was carried out improperly. Lastly, it is beneficial for you to have a copy of your medical records in case there is an emergency, a healthcare provider will already know what to expect or not to expect based on your records.

Need Help Getting Your Medical Records? Contact a Santa Rosa Medical Malpractice Attorney

You have a right to your medical records. Whether your medical records will be used to further investigate a malpractice suit or to help provide information in the case of an emergency. If you or a loved one has had issues receiving medical records it is imperative for you to contact an experienced Santa Rosa medical records attorney at Teal Law Group to help you fight for your rights. Receiving your medical records can help your case, and there are laws that will help you receive what is yours. Contact our office today for an initial consultation or call us at 707-525-1212 in Santa Rosa or 916-448-1010 in Sacramento.

I Was Awake During Part Of My Surgery, Now I Have Severe Mental Trauma

When major surgery is performed, anesthesia is usually administered. Properly used anesthesia is incredibly valuable to patients. It can make a major operation somewhat bearable. If you are going under the knife, you are placing place enormous faith in medical professionals. You expect that they will treat you will prudent care and take every reasonable precaution necessary to keep you safe. You are extremely vulnerable during this time. Imagine the horror of unexpectedly waking up during a surgery, but not being able to tell anyone about it because of the anesthetic. It is a horrifying thought and it actually happens more than you might think. Most victims who are find themselves unexpectedly awake during surgery report severe mental trauma. If you, or a loved one, was awake during surgery when you should not have been you may be a victim of medical malpractice. If you experienced mental trauma as a result, you should seek the services of an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney.

Can I Collect Compensation For Mental Anguish?

Yes, you are potentially eligible for significant compensation for mental trauma caused by medical malpractice. Mental anguish can be very serious, and it is a recoverable non-economic damage in some situations. Specific types of mental anguish include:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Fear
  • Grief
  • Trauma

Under California law, there is a statutory cap on noneconomic damages. Noneconomic damage can be difficult to quantify and are often fiercely contested by opposing insurance companies. If you have suffered mental pain from surgery or any other medical operation, you need to speak to an experienced California medical Malpractice attorney. The fact is anaesthesiology errors can be prevented. Medical professionals have a legal responsibility to make sure that things have been administered property and to ensure that all reasonable precautions are taken. When medical professionals fail to live up to their end of the bargain, it can have serious, life changing, consequences for the victims.

Contact An Experienced Sacramento Medical Malpractice Attorney

At the Teal Law Group in Sacramento, our attorneys are completely committed to helping victims of medical malpractice. Finding yourself unexpectedly awake during surgery can be an incredibly traumatic experience. If you, or your family member, has suffered at the hands of an anesthesiologist’s error, you deserve to be compensated for your mental pain. Contact our experienced California medical malpractice attorneys today for a free consultation.

Chiropractors Need Medical Malpractice Insurance Too

Much like other medical professionals, the care given to patients by chiropractors must meet certain legal standards. When a chiropractor fails to provide a reasonable standard of care, they may be committed medical malpractice. If you have injured by a chiropractor in California you should speak to an attorney. You may have a valid chiropractor malpractice claim and you may be entitled to compensation. Contact an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney to learn more about your legal options.

Chiropractors Can be Sued for Medical Malpractice

Despite the fact that chiropractors practice medicine in a somewhat unique way, they can still be held liable for injuries the cause through negligence. According to the Council on Chiropractic Education, a chiropractor receives at least four thousand hours of medical training. Chiropractors are medical professionals, and they are licensed by the state of California. When a patient consults a chiropractor, they reasonably expect that they will receive a proper medical diagnosis and they will be handled with prudent care. When chiropractors fail to live up to this reasonable standard of care they can seriously damage the lives of their patients. Negligent chiropractors can, and should, be held accountable.

Common Types of Chiropractic Medical Malpractice

  • Negligent damage to the patient’s body: If a chiropractor causes a new injury, or substantially aggravates a prior injury, their actions may be negligence. A chiropractor’s body adjustments can cause significant damage to the ribs, back and neck. They have a responsibility to act with prudent care when manipulating a patient’s body and performing adjustments.
  • Chiropractor induced stroke: If a chiropractor is not sufficiently prudent their negligence can even induce a stroke. A stroke can occur when a chiropractor ruptures or damages an artery in the neck.
  • Failure to diagnose a medical condition: Chiropractors are medical professionals, medical professionals have a duty to reasonably diagnose underlying medical condition. If a chiropractor fails to diagnose an urgent medical condition it may be medical malpractice.

Contact An Experienced Sacramento Medical Malpractice Attorney

Chiropractors need malpractice insurance because they can, and do, commit medical malpractice too. An injury caused by a negligent chiropractor can be very serious. If you, or your family member, has been injured by a chiropractor and you think the injury might have been the result of malpractice, speak to attorney immediately. At Teal Law Group, we will review your case and aggressively represent you. Our attorneys will make certain that you get the full compensation you deserve. Contact an experienced Sacramento malpractice attorney today.

My Dental Procedure Went Wrong

Dental malpractice is a major problem in California. When you go to the dentist, you reasonably expect that the dental professional will keep you as safe as possible during any oral procedure. A dentist, and dental assistants, are required to provide patients with appropriate care that meets legal standards. If your dentist fails to live up to this standard, the damage you face can be significant. Damage from a botched dental procedure can be physical, mental or financial. A physical injury caused by a negligent dentist can be very painful, to the point that the injury is completely debilitating. If your Sacramento dental procedure went awry, contact an experienced dental malpractice attorney, to learn about your legal options.

Do I Have A Valid Dental Malpractice Claim?

If you feel like your dental procedure went wrong you might have a valid medical malpractice claim. Victims of dental malpractice are often entitled to substantial compensation. A successful legal claim for dental malpractice has four different required elements:

  • Prove the existence of a dentist and patient relationship;
  • Demonstrate the appropriate standard of care the dentist owed the patient;
  • Show that the standard of care was breached; and
  • Connect the harm that was caused to the patient to the breach of the standard of care.

The majority of the time, the existence of the dentist and patient relationship is not contested. Establishing the appropriate standard of dental care can also be relatively routine in most dental malpractice cases. The key to successfully winning a dental malpractice lawsuit is establishing that a breach occurred and proving that the established breach was the cause of your damage. If for any reason you believe your dentist might have committed malpractice, you should speak to an attorney as soon as possible.

What Compensation is Available for Dental Malpractice?

Once you have established negligence on the part of the dental professional. You must also show that you sustained real damage in order to collect compensation. There are several different types of compensation which may be available to you if you were the victim of dental malpractice, they include:

  • Any medical expenses;
  • Lost wages and future lost wages; and
  • Pain and suffering.

Contact An Experienced Sacramento Dental Malpractice Attorney

If you, or your loved one, has been injured by the malpractice of a dentist or dental assistant an experienced personal injury attorney can help. At Teal Law Group, our attorneys have deep understanding of California dental malpractice law and can comprehensively review your case and determine what steps you should take next. Contact the Teal Law Group today for a free consultation.

Most Common Medical Malpractice Cases in Sacramento

When you are feeling under the weather, most people first seek over the counter medicine to cure them, and if that does not work they tend to seek medical attention. You trust that when you seek medical attention that you will be provided the utmost care and that the proper procedures will be used. Though most of the time you are, unfortunately, this is not always the case. If you or a loved one suspect that you have been the victim of medical malpractice, it is imperative to contact an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney to seek legal advice.

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice in Sacramento, is when a healthcare provider omits or acts in way that deviates from the accepted standards of practice in the medical community that results in death or injury to the patient. It is essentially negligence by a healthcare professional. This negligence by a healthcare provider includes physicians, hospitals, or other providers of health that results in injury or death. Medical professionals are held to a higher standard than most people and are measured against other medical professionals with the same degree of knowledge, skill, and intelligence.

What are the Most Common Medical Malpractice Cases?

The most common cases of medical malpractice includes:

  • Misdiagnosis
  • Delayed treatment
  • Surgical errors
  • Prescription errors
  • Anesthesia miscalculations
  • Injuries to baby during childbirth
  • Failure to acknowledge or act on a test results

California Section 340.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure states that all medical malpractice claims must be brought within three years of the date of injury or one year after you discover the injury, whichever comes first. Therefore, seeking legal advice as soon as you are aware of the medical negligence is of the utmost importance.

Need Legal Advice?

Medical malpractice cases are never easy; however, with the right legal advice medical malpractice cases can be easier. Nonetheless, it is important to note, that just because a patient is not happy with the outcome of their medical treatment does not automatically mean that the medical professional engaged in medical malpractice and that is why it is important to contact an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney to consult about your case. Here, at Teal Law Group we will consult with you about your case and strategize about how to achieve the best possible outcomes for your case. Contact our office today to ensure that your rights are protected!

California’s Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice

Though we all like to believe that injuries during medical treatment by medical personnel does not happen, unfortunately it does. Sometimes you find out immediately that an injury has been sustained to you, however, often times, you do not find out that an injury has occurred until later. So in these cases, what should you do? What is the best course of action to take? If you or a loved one have been the victim of medical malpractice it is extremely beneficial to contact an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney about your case.

What is the Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice Cases?

For California, the law imposes a statute of limitations which sets a maximum amount of time that legal proceedings can occur after the date of an accident. A statute of limitations is the deadline for filing a lawsuit. Most lawsuits must be filed within a certain amount of time, and if not filed within that time frame, can no longer be filed.

Depending on the type of case or procedure, California’s statute of limitations range from one year to ten years. California’s state law states that for professional malpractice, the period of time during which you can file a lawsuit for personal injury is three years from the date of the injury or if the injury is not discovered right away, then the statute of limitations is one year upon the date of discovery or when you should have discovered the injury, whichever occurs first. Also, at no time shall an action exceed this three year time frame unless the event is tolled due to: fraud; intentional concealment; or the presence of a foreign body, which has no therapeutic or diagnostic purpose or effect, in the person of the injured person.

Need Legal Advice?

Injuries can be sustained at any time during a medical procedure, however, once that injury has been discovered it is invaluable to contact an attorney to determine whether you have a case and to make sure the statute of limitations have not run on your case. If the statute of limitations has been ran then you will no longer be able to file a claim. Therefore, contacting Teal Law Group to receive an initial consultation on your case is beneficial. Contact our office today so that we can help strategize about the best action plans for your case.

Most Common Medication Errors

We, as people, expect that when we visit a doctor’s office and medication is prescribed it will be sufficient in helping make us feel better. If the medicine does not work we tend to go back to the exact same doctor so that they can prescribe us “better” medicine. However, what happens when you have received a medication error? If you or a loved one have sustained an injury due to a medication error from a medical provider you should seek an experienced Sacramento medical malpractice attorney to see if you have a case.

What are Medication Errors?

Medication errors can be harmless to some, however, for others, it can prove to be detrimental. A medication error is any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm. Approximately 1.3 million people are injured annually in the United States following medication errors and unfortunately this number continues to increase making a great amount of medical malpractice claims being filed.

What are the Most Common Medication Errors?

Though there are several reasons for medication errors, there are certain errors that are repeated throughout Sacramento. These medication errors include, but are not limited to: taking too much medication, overdoses, medications interacting with other medications, illegible prescriptions; and staff distractions. Also, studies show that most medication errors occurs with older people because they often times more than one prescription within an eight hour time frame.

There are certain precautions that can be made to minimize medication errors. When your doctor gives you a prescription you should be sure to ask him or her: the name of the drug; the correct dosage; what the drug is used for; and the purpose of the drug. Asking these questions before taking certain medication should keep error rates at a low.

Need Legal Advice?

Medication errors can be detrimental to a person depending on other circumstances. Because of the seriousness that medication errors can have on a person, it is important to seek legal advice if a medication error has created a serious injury to you or a loved one. Contact Teal Law Group for your initial consultation. We understand the complexities of drug interactions and are here to help.