Medical Malpractice FAQs
As one of the most well-respected medical malpractice litigation firms in Albuquerque, Curtis & Co. frequently receives calls and emails from people who are not sure whether they have a legitimate medical malpractice lawsuit following an injury or death of a loved one.
Every case is different, and there are no “canned” answers to many of the questions. Before we accept a case, we will gather all medical records and reports, interview people and investigate the evidence. We then provide a full review of the case and an explanation of what legal options (if any) are available for recovering monetary damages.
If you have a feeling something went wrong over the course of your medical treatment, trust your instinct. We invite you to call us at 505-633-7998 to explain your circumstances and set up a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.
This section below includes a few of the most common questions we receive from people calling to schedule a consultation.
How Much Time Do You Have?
The time available for the filing of a lawsuit is very complicated in New Mexico. There can be notice requirements and two- or three-year statute of limitations, depending on who the medical provider is. If the person harmed is a child, the statute of limitations is longer. In some cases, an application to a panel may need to be provided before suit can be filed. A lawyer must be involved in calculating the statute of limitations in a medical malpractice case. It is important to contact Curtis & Co. as close to the time of the injury or death as is possible so that evidence cannot be altered or destroyed. Understandably, sometimes that is not possible, and the family or the patient needs time to heal or deal with the pain of loss before they can even consider finding out what happened. The attorneys of Curtis & Co. have become virtual experts at detecting altered records and finding the truth regardless of cover-ups or efforts by the wrongdoer to destroy evidence.
What Is A Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?
Medical malpractice suits are brought when patients suffer medical injury or die as a result of an error in diagnosis, treatment or procedure by a physician, licensed health care provider or health care facility staff. Negligence is generally defined as failing to meet an expected standard of care. It is not necessary for the physician, clinic or hospital staff to act intentionally. For example, a doctor may puncture an organ during surgery, which may not be an instance of medical malpractice. However, failing to follow up and properly treat the patient, such that infection sets in, may be determined to be an act of negligence for which liability may be assigned to the doctor, as well as the clinic or hospital held responsible.
How Do You Know If You Have A Legitimate Case?
People build up years of trust with their doctors and don’t typically make accusations of negligence lightly or quickly. In most cases of legitimate malpractice, the patient will have a strong feeling that something went tragically wrong. If you are unsure whether you have a valid claim, call us.
What Makes It Medical Malpractice?
Doctors and nurses are under constant pressure. Every day and night, they must deal with a full range of serious injuries, potentially fatal medical conditions and often common illnesses. The staff’s first priority is to recognize the seriousness of the injury or illness presented to them and make instant “triage” decisions regarding which patients can wait and which require immediate treatment.
Thankfully, the large majority of medical professionals are well-trained, conscientious and get their diagnosis and treatment right. However, there are also ample numbers of cases in which a patient with a serious heart condition or exhibiting signs of stroke has been left in the waiting room because of a misdiagnosis. If the misdiagnosis or improper level of care does not meet the expected standard of care for an emergency room environment, the hospital and licensed medical professionals involved in the case may be held liable for medical negligence.
Learn more at Myths About Medical Malpractice.