Negotiating a medical malpractice suit is much different from negotiating on settlements for personal injury claims, on multiple accounts. Medical malpractice settlements require information and the ability to handle multiple legal paperwork and procedures that this kind of suit demands.
Also, medical malpractices suits are subject to each state’s specific laws, in this regard, which could affect the end result of the settlement. Most importantly, medical malpractices settlements happen to be far more aggressive than your average settlement with general liability insurers.
This is mostly due to the involvement of medical malpractice insurers, who have their own manner of handling such claims by throwing the claimant into a sea of legal notices and paperwork that overwhelm the plaintiff party.
Steps to begin negotiating with negligent doctor
Even if you would like to go for simple out of the court settlement, you will have to notify the doctor accused of negligence and their insurance company. You can do so by writing them a letter or through a phone call to the concerned doctor.
However, in some cases you might be expected to go through the lengthy process of a formal court filing, in view of a possible medical malpractice lawsuit.
Medical malpractice insurance companies require notified doctors to inform them immediately. Failure to do so can lead to the insurance company denying coverage, which would be detrimental to both parties.
In rare cases, doctors are self-insured and are open to negotiating a settlement out of the court. Unfortunately, that is an extremely rare case, as most doctors are covered by medical malpractice insurance companies, and once they get involved, they will push you comply with all legal requirements like filing a suit and meeting any formal legal requirements, before they even start contemplating a settlement. Of course, this is a way of stalling the settlement as they know these are steps that the plaintiff has to go through and there is no way of completing negotiations or arriving at a settlement without completing these legal requirements.
Negotiation of the settlement
A medical malpractice settlement negotiation can only occur once you have expressed your intent of filing a suit against the doctor liable or have files a formal NOI, also known as a Notice of Intent to Sue.
According to certain State laws, you can only go forward with your negotiation for settlement by filing an NOI (Notice of Intent to Sue), first. This along with some other state-specific laws need to be taken care of before going forward with your medical malpractice suit.
Rejection of settlement by the doctor
Once your NOI is filed, the medical malpractice insurance company immediately comes into the picture. One unique aspect of medical malpractice settlements is that the doctors have a choice to accept or reject the settlement proposal. This primarily happens because once a doctor goes in for settlement, the State will require the doctor the report the settlement which would in turn impact their employment in future, insurance premiums, and licensing, and overall reputation. A medical malpractice attorney West Virginia trusts could help you increase the chances of settlement and reduce unforeseen complications.
Contact Adams Legal Group, PLLC for insight into medical malpractice suits and the benefits of having a lawyer.