Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers: The Plight of the PlaintiffMarch 14, 2013
Maryland has some of the toughest state medical malpractice laws in the country. Unfortunately, they are mostly tough on the plaintiff, not on the defendant.
First, Maryland is one of only three states that continue to adhere to the legal theory of contributory negligence in all personal injury claims. This means if a jury finds that the plaintiff was in any way responsible for causing his or her own injury, even in the most minimal degree, the plaintiff cannot recover any damages.
It is not hard to see how this might apply in cases such as auto collisions or slip-and-fall accidents, where the jury may feel the victim should have been driving or walking more carefully. But in medical malpractice cases, it is a bit more difficult to imagine how the negligence of a trained and trusted professional can be trumped by the inadvertent error of a hapless individual.
Yet one of the standard questions a medical professional is asked at the beginning of the action is: If you gave any advice, instruction, or warning that the patient did not follow, state:
- The advice, instruction, or warning that was given
- The identity of all persons to whom you gave the advice, instruction, or warning
- When and where the advice, instruction, or warning was given
- All reasons given, if any, for not following the advice, instruction or warning.
And so, the finger-pointing begins.
At the other end of the medical malpractice lawsuit, the Maryland plaintiff gets hit again. Even if the jury is convinced the medical practitioner was liable, the amount the victim may collect for non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering) is capped in 2013 at $725,000. If you have a claim and need assistance with Maryland malpractice law, contact the Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton, P.A. for legal advice and aid.