When you visit the doctor, you trust that you will get proper care. Sadly, every year a number of people in Maryland and throughout the US are injured because of medical negligence. In the most serious of cases, medical professionals make fatal mistakes that kill patients and leave behind loved ones who are completely devastated. If you were hurt or lost a loved one and you believe it was because of medical malpractice, let our experienced Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers help. At Arfaa Law Group, we understand the nuances of medical malpractice law – including the strict procedural requirements that must be met in order to file and proceed with your claim.
The Kentucky Supreme Court recently struck down a law requiring a team of physicians to assess medical malpractice claims before they go to court. Specifically, the law used to give the team of physicians nine months to evaluate a medical malpractice lawsuit and then provide an opinion about whether the claim had merit. That opinion could later be used as evidence at trial. The court held that the law violated the section 14 of the state’s constitution, which states that every individual has access to the justice system without delay. In addition, the court noted that the law went against the constitutional prohibition against special legislation as it was created to benefit medical professionals and no such special protection exists for any other type of tort defendant.
Maryland “Certificate of Merit” Requirement
While Kentucky may no longer require a plaintiff’s case to be reviewed before filing in court, Maryland law still does. Maryland law mandates that a medical doctor sign off on a medical malpractice lawsuit. In fact, within 90 days of filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, a Maryland plaintiff is required to file a certificate of merit from a qualified medical expert or a licensed or certified professional.
The certificate must contain the following information:
- The specific injury that is complained of;
- The alleged breach of the standard of care; and
- The defendant medical professionals breach of the standard of care was the direct and proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries.
The certificate of merit should clearly identify the doctors or other negligent medical professionals who deviated from the standard of care. This procedural requirement was created to show that the case is based upon solid, reliable facts and to parse out legitimate claims from frivolous ones.
Trusted Baltimore Medical Injury Attorneys
Medical malpractice cases are quite complex. If you or a loved one has experienced medical negligence and you want to pursue a medical malpractice claim, we can help. At Arfaa Law Group, our Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys are committed to providing experienced and skillful representation to all of our Maryland clients. Even if you are unsure about how to proceed, you should reach out to us and we can examine the specifics of your case to help you understand whether or not you have a valid legal claim. To schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case, please call 410-889-1850 or contact us online.
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