Tennessee Medical Malpractice Lawyers

Top-Rated Nashville Medical Malpractice Lawyers

Millions of people suffer injury at the hands of medical or healthcare providers every year. If your healthcare provider (doctor, nurse, hospital) failed to adhere to care standards, resulting in your injury, you should fight for justice. We’re proud to be the premier medical malpractice lawyers in the region, and you can count on us to get you the compensation that you’re entitled to.

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice is professional negligence by act or omission by a health care provider in which the treatment provided falls below the accepted standard of practice in the medical community and causes injury or death to the patient, with most cases involving medical error.

How Do I Know if I Have a Case?

If you believe that you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, the first step is to consult with an experienced medical malpractice attorney. He or she will review your case and determine if you have a claim.
There are many factors that must be considered in order to determine if you have a case, including whether the health care provider’s actions or inaction fell below thestandard of care, whether that breach caused harm, and whether the damages can be quantified. It is important to note that not all bad outcomes are due to medical malpractice. In order for there to be liability, the health care provider’s negligence must have been a substantial factor in causing the injury or death.

What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?

If it is determined that medical malpractice occurred, victims may be able to recover compensatory damages, which are designed to restore what was lost as a result of the negligence. This can include economic damages such as lost wages and medical expenses, as well as noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering and loss of consortium. In some cases, punitive damages may also be awarded, but this is rare. Punitive damages are designed to punish the wrongdoer and deter future bad conduct and are only awarded in cases of egregious misconduct.

 

If you believe that you or someone you love has been the victim of medical malpractice, it is important to seek legal counsel as soon as possible. An experienced Nashville medical malpractice lawyer can review your case and help determine if you have a claim and what damages may be available to you.

 

Medical Malpractice Cases Can Include:

Do you have a case?

Understanding Your Medical Malpractice Claim

If you’ve experienced an injury as a result of subpar medical care, you’ve likely considered bringing a medical malpractice suit against your healthcare provider. There are a few things you should keep in mind, however, in determining if you have a case.

Unsure if you have a case?
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Elements of Malpractice

Medical malpractice in Tennessee requires negligence, injury, and causation.

To bring a successful medical malpractice claim, you must be able to prove the three required elements of malpractice: that your healthcare provider was negligent (meaning that their care fell short of established standards), that you sustained some type of injury or illness under their care, and that your injury or illness was directly caused by their negligence. If your claim lacks proof of any of the three elements–negligence, injury, or causation–your medical malpractice claim is likely not recoverable.

In most cases, the causation element is the most difficult element to prove. It is relatively easy to produce evidence proving that an injury was sustained, and that the attendant medical professional deviated from their standard of care in some manner. However, it can be very difficult to establish the link between the two. Most medical procedures involve countless variables, and if the defendant can show that the plaintiff’s injury could have been caused by circumstances other than the doctor’s negligence, the plaintiff may not recover.

Injury Alone is not malpractice

Sickness or injury alone do not constitute medical malpractice in Tennessee.

Some patients mistakenly believe that any illness or injury sustained during a hospital stay is sufficient grounds for a malpractice claim. Unfortunately, however, there are a number of unavoidable health risks that go along with most medical procedures. For instance, it’s not uncommon for patients to contract post-surgical infections or to have unforeseen reactions to certain medications or instruments, or even for a patient’s condition to worsen after a procedure. These situations, in themselves, do not prove negligence on behalf of the medical staff, and without establishing negligence and a causal link, a plaintiff only has proof of an accidental injury.

Substantial Harm Required

Successful malpractice suits generally require substantial harm.

Even if a plaintiff can show injury, negligence, and causation, his claim still may not be recoverable if his injury was minor. Conditions or injuries from which a patient quickly recovers–such as brief infections, minor allergic reactions, bruises, soreness, or cuts–will likely not support a medical malpractice lawsuit.

To be clear, this doesn’t mean that medical malpractice has not occurred. Even if an injury was minor, it is still correctly classified as malpractice if it directly resulted from a healthcare provider’s negligence. However, medical malpractice suits often require significant investments of time and money, and the compensation for minor injuries will likely be less than the cost of bringing a malpractice suit. Generally, a plaintiff’s injury must be relatively significant for a malpractice suit to be worthwhile. It’s important to consult with an attorney to determine whether your claim will sustain the costs of litigation.

Time Deadlines

Keep track of the statute of limitations.

In Tennessee, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims is one year from the date that the injury was discovered, but no more than three years from the date it occurred. For example, if a surgeon negligently damaged a patient’s organ, and the patient was not aware of the injury until a year later, the patient would have one year from the date of discovery to file suit. If the patient discovered the injury five years later, however, it would be too late to file a medical malpractice claim. In other words, the injury must be discovered within three years of its occurrence in order to support a medical malpractice claim.

There are a couple of exceptions to these rules, however. If the patient could not discover the injury within the three-year limitation due to fraud or concealment on behalf of the healthcare provider, the three-year limitation will be removed and the patient will have one year from the date of discovery to file her claim, regardless of when the injury occurred.

The same extension applies to foreign object cases: a patient may bring a claim within one year of the discovery of a foreign object in her system, no matter how much time has passed since it was inserted.

Keep detailed records of your injury

Keep detailed records of your injury.

If you sustain an injury and plan to bring a medical malpractice claim, it’s important to document every stage of your injury, from the date of its occurrence (or the date that you notice it) onwards. Note any side effects and any changes in your condition as they occur, and always record the dates of such developments. This will help you remember the statute of limitations deadline for your claim, assist future medical providers in assessing the extent of your injuries, and help your medical malpractice attorney evaluate your claim. If you’re unsure of the next steps to take in your medical malpractice case, call the Nashville medical malpractice attorneys at David Randolph Smith & Associates for a free phone consultation. Let our experienced Tennessee medical lawyers offer their expert advice on the best way to handle your claim.

Over $500 Million
Recovered Since 1993

We've Helped Thousands of People Just Like You

We are known for getting life-changing results and fighting to make our communities safer.

Why Choose Us As Your Nashville Medical Malpractice Attorney

With us on your side, you can focus on what’s most important – your recovery.

Decades Of Experience

Decades Of Experience

Our Nashville attorneys have over 75 years of combined practice handling cases involving personal injury, medical malpractice, civil rights, medical device lawsuits, wrongful death, and much more.

Excellent Reputation

Excellent Reputation

DRS Law is a well-respected law firm in Nashville and throughout the U.S. Founder, David Randolph Smith, has been selected as a Mid-South Super Lawyer, named one of the Top 100 attorneys in Tennessee in all fields of practice, and is included in the Best Lawyers in America guidebook.

Small Case Volume

Small Case Volume

Unlike many Nashville firms or lawyers that handle a large volume of cases, we concentrate our expertise on a select few cases. With this, our attorneys ensure that every step is taken to obtain the most favorable outcomes for our clients.

We Prepare For Trial

We Prepare For Trial

Every case is meticulously prepared for trial by our trial team and support staff in order to maximize the recovery for our client, whether by settlement or trial verdict. Our proven track record of success has resulted in multi-million-dollar settlements and judgments in a wide variety of individual and group cases.

What to Expect

Our Legal Services Are Completely Personalized To You And Your Unique Needs

01  Free Consultation

Our top-rated Tennessee personal injury lawyers provide free, no-pressure case evaluations. We will help you determine if you have a case and will answer all your questions in plain English. We never charge any fees until we win your case.

02  Personalized Service

If we take your case, it’s because we believe we can help you. We will get to work outlining a strategic plan of action. We want you to feel taken care of during this difficult time — whatever questions you have, we’re here with answers. Frequent check-ins ensure you are comfortable with the progress of your case.

03  You Get Paid

We are passionate about the success of your case and will give it the close attention and focus it deserves. We find solutions that other lawyers miss, discovering key facts that help you win. We call upon our gifts in storytelling to argue your case with passion and conviction so you get the compensation and justice you deserve.

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