Medical malpractice occurs when a medical provider deviates from the standard level of care, as a result, injured a patient. Despite the fact that medical malpractice is an increasingly prevalent problem and is, in fact, the third leading cause of death in the United States, few medical professionals or their insurance companies are ever held accountable. This is in large part due to the fact that filing and pursuing a medical malpractice claim is a difficult and expensive endeavor. Sadly, for many claimants, it is also unlikely to end in victory.
We say this not to deter you from pursuing the compensation you or a loved one need to recover completely and in financial comfort. Rather, we tell you this because we know that everyday citizens who go up against wealthy physicians and their even wealthier organizations need substantial financial backing to be able to see medical malpractice lawsuits through from beginning to end. Financial backing becomes even more crucial when you are unable to work because of your injuries and when you face ever-growing debt.
As a malpractice victim who is unable to work and who has extensive medical debt to your name, you may not qualify for traditional forms of funding. Fortunately, traditional funding is not your only option. At NY Legal Funding, we specialize in medical malpractice lawsuit funding, which is essentially a cash advance on your anticipated settlement. See if medical malpractice case funding is right for you, or contact our team to learn more.
Medical malpractice can occur in a variety of care settings and involve several types of injuries. However, most malpractice allegations can be categorized in one of five ways:
An overwhelming majority of medical malpractice instances are “never events,” which means they involve such egregious errors that they never should have occurred in the first place. Despite this, few malpractice victims ever end up filing a legal claim and, of those that do, very few are successful.
There are a few reasons why medical malpractice cases are so difficult to win, one of the biggest of which is expense. The law places a significant burden on malpractice victims to prove that the defendants in their cases were negligent and that the negligence resulted in injuries and damages. To prove that a healthcare practitioner acted negligently, a plaintiff must show that he or she acted against the established standard of care under the given circumstances.
Unfortunately, neither an injured party nor his or her attorney can testify to this. Rather, only a qualified expert medical professional in the same or similar field as the defendant can testify on such matters. Such experts charge a significant fee for their time and testimony, which plaintiffs must pay either out of pocket or through their anticipated settlement.
Assuming the qualified expert does testify in favor of the injured party, the plaintiff and his or her legal team must then establish causation. Causation simply means that the provider’s negligence directly contributed to the plaintiff’s injuries and damages. Again, only a qualified medical expert can testify as to cause and effect, which only adds to the plaintiff’s growing legal costs.
Some attorneys require their clients to pay upfront for the costs of hiring medical experts for their testimony. If your attorney is one of them, medical malpractice litigation funding can help you secure the testimony you need without driving you further into debt.
Costs aside, medical malpractice cases are difficult to win — even for patients with medical malpractice lawsuit funding on their sides. Extensive studies show that providers are more likely to prevail in medical malpractice cases, even when plaintiffs show up to negotiations or trials with substantial evidence in their favor.
One analysis between 2002 and 2005 shows that providers were successful in 80% of cases. However, in cases in which plaintiffs presented strong evidence, providers’ success rates dropped to 50%.
Though the odds may not be in your favor, that does not necessarily mean you should forego pursuing a claim entirely. If you confidently take your case all the way to trial, your odds of walking away with an award are low. However, if you do win, you stand to recover a much higher amount than if you were to settle out of court. For reference, the average medical malpractice jury award is over $1 million.
If you forego litigation and instead choose to settle your case out of court, your chances of success are much higher as you do not have to impress jurors, who are more likely to side with providers. Most medical organizations and practitioners wish to avoid litigation and the negative publicity that comes with it and so are willing to offer somewhat fair settlements. The average out-of-court settlement, for reference, is $425,000 in medical malpractice cases.
To say that medical malpractice cases are difficult to win is an understatement. Malpractice cases require substantial proof in your favor and evidence against the provider. They also require a significant time and monetary investment on your part. If you do not have the appropriate resources to devote to your case, your efforts, no matter how meaningful, may be futile.
At NY Legal Funding, we strive to level the playing field for medical malpractice victims in and around New York who have a solid case but who need the financial backing to see it through to the end. We do this by issuing advances on potential settlements via medical malpractice lawsuit loans. We base our decisions not on an applicant’s creditworthiness but rather, on the strength and value of their claims. Medical malpractice litigation funding is non-recourse, meaning we do not collect payment if you do not win. To learn more about this type of lawsuit funding and if it is right for you, contact our team at NY Legal Funding today.