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Medical Negligence Lawyers

Restoring quality of life 

Most people trust health professionals to use care and skill when providing medical care. To give the right diagnosis at the right time. To prescribe appropriate treatment.   

It’s traumatic to have something go wrong, especially if the treatment results in permanent injury or illness. 

If this has happened to you, you may have medical costs you didn’t anticipate, or perhaps the interruption to your life prevents you from earning an income, You may need other financial support because of your injuriesmedical negligence claim may help. 

We’re one of Adelaide’s most trusted teams of medical negligence lawyers. We’ll help you make a claim.

What is medical negligence? 

Medical negligence is sometimes also known as medical malpractice.

Medical and healthcare professionals include:

  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Dentists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Chiropractors

Medical institutions include hospitals and clinics.

They are all medical providers.

Medical providers have a duty to take reasonable care of the safety and wellbeing of their patients. The duty includes:

  • Investigating symptoms and complaints
  • Getting the patient’s medical history
  • Making a diagnosis
  • Advising treatment options and prognosis
  • Getting consent to provide treatment
  • Providing treatment

This is known as duty of care. If a provider fails in their duty of care, for example, they’re careless in providing medical treatment, it may be a case of medical negligence if the failure caused the injury.

In a medical negligence case, a court will consider whether the medical treatment failed to meet an acceptable standard. If it finds the treatment didn’t meet an acceptable standard, you may be entitled to compensation for medical negligence.

Medical negligence claims are often technical and require medical knowledge to work out whether the medical provider failed in their duty of care. You’ll need a lawyer who understands how medical malpractice law operates, and who also understands medical complexities. They’re a rare breed.

We’re lucky to have a whole team of medical negligence specialists in our Adelaide office, providing medical negligence legal services throughout South Australia.

Why choose us as your medical negligence lawyers?

Medical negligence claims are complicated. To know what to claim, when to claim and how to claim, your lawyer needs an excellent understanding of injury law in South Australia. They also need a comprehensive knowledge of medicine. In other words, they need to know what lawyers know, and they also need to know a lot about what doctors know.

It’s a big ask, and few lawyers are genuinely able to grasp both legal and medical concepts.

Our team has years of experience in medical negligence claims, with superior skill in:

  • Analysing medical records and reports
  • Working out whether to claim
  • Assessing compensation

We understand the complexities of medical conditions and terminology. Even better, we’re skilled at translating the information into terms that you can understand.

With experience in hundreds of medical negligence claims over the last three decades, you can count on us for support.

When we meet with you for the first time, we’ll discuss your circumstances and answer your questions, including:

  • Will my claim be successful?
  • How much money will I get?
  • What will it cost?
  • How long will it take?

We know these questions reflect your biggest concerns, so we won’t skip over the answers. And we won’t sugar coat our answers. We’ll give you our honest opinions based on decades of experience as medical malpractice lawyers.

It’s our promise to you.

Contact us to find out more. 

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Our experience in medical negligence claims

  • Surgery
  • Emergency treatment
  • Cosmetic procedures
  • Obstetrics
  • Birth injury claims
  • Paediatrics
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Delayed diagnosis
  • Gynaecology
  • Orthopaedics
  • Drug treatment

In the times that count, we’ll support you

Speak to us to find out more

Frequently asked questions about medical negligence claims

  • How do I know whether I have a claim for medical negligence?

    If you’ve suffered an illness or injury, and there’s a chance it was caused by a medical provider, it’s essential to see us as soon as possible.

    We’ll find out more about your situation and work out whether you should make a claim.

    We understand that taking legal action is a big step, and requires a financial and time commitment from you. At your free first appointment, we’ll listen to your story and assess your situation. You can find out more about us and consider whether you want us to act as your medical negligence lawyers.

    Contact us today to book your free first appointment.

  • Medical negligence or medical malpractice?

    Medical negligence and medical malpractice mean the same thing. Both terms refer to compensation claims for physical and psychological injuries caused by the negligence of health professionals. There’s no difference between the two terms.

    Both terms are based on allegations that a health provider failed to exercise reasonable skill and care.

  • When can I claim for medical negligence?

    The negligence must have caused you some kind of loss. For example, if a dentist put a filling in the wrong tooth, apart from the time spent in the dentist’s chair, you may not have suffered any loss. You were able to resume your normal life immediately. The inconvenience may be dealt with by your apologetic dentist deciding not to charge you for the filling, and by filling the tooth that needs the attention.

    But where you’ve suffered a more severe injury or the death of a family member, you may be able to make a medical negligence claim.

    There are strict time limits for making medical negligence claims (usually three years from the date of the injury). Once these limits pass, it’s rare for a court to allow an extension of time to make a claim.

    The sooner you receive legal advice, the better. Contact us today to book your appointment.

  • What can I claim?

    You can claim for physical and mental injuries which are caused by a health professional or health organisation (such as a hospital) failing to take proper care during or after your medical treatment.

    Claiming compensation for medical negligence means that you’re seeking money for the losses that you suffered because of the medical provider’s negligence.

    Compensation can be claimed for:

    • Medical expenses
    • Loss of income
    • Future loss of income, including superannuation
    • Pain and suffering
    • Future care
    • Loss of financial support (in the case of a loved one’s death)

    Future care needs can include treatment, medications, rehabilitation and other expenses related to restoring your quality of life.

  • What do I need to prove in a medical negligence claim?

    There are three essential elements to a negligence claim:

    1. Was the medical provider negligent?
    2. Did the negligence cause the injury?
    3. Did the treatment cause or contribute to the injury?

    Satisfying each of these elements requires evidence and excellent knowledge of medical negligence law. The evidence usually includes medical reports detailing your injuries and most importantly, reports and testimony from medical experts which give opinions about the cause of your injuries, the impact on your life and the care you received.

    It’s a detailed and complicated process to work out answers to these questions, but we’ve got decades of experience in claims like yours. We’ll do the hard work to help you get your life back.

    You’re in safe hands with us.

  • If I make a medical negligence claim, will I have to go to court?

    A claim for medical negligence (or medical malpractice) starts when documents are filed at court. They give details about the claim and provide notice of the claim to the medical provider.

    If you’re already struggling with injuries or illness, it can be a confronting process.

    But often that’s where the court process ends. It’s true that some claims go to trial in a court, in which witnesses give evidence, and there’s legal argument. But for most medical negligence claims, the parties usually agree to settle without having a trial.

    This means the claim is often resolved more quickly with much less expense.

    It’s also important to remember that you can choose whether to go to trial. And you can make this decision at any time. We’re skilled at constantly reassessing the strength of medical negligence claims, and you’ll get the benefit of that experience.

    We’ll work with you for a result that’s reasonable, fair, and which will help you get back on your feet. For many people, that’s a settlement. For some, it’s a trial. We’ll work out what’s best for you.

  • Is a medical negligence claim regarded as a common law claim, a civil claim, or a damages claim?

    If you’re making a medical negligence claim, you must be able to prove that you’ve suffered injury, loss and damage because of the negligence. Only then would compensation be payable to you.

    Sometimes compensation is described as damages. The different types of compensation are described as heads of damage.

    Civil claims usually involve a claim for compensation or wrongdoing. They’re different from criminal proceedings (or criminal cases). Most personal injury claims are civil claims.

    In South Australia, legislation (also known as statutes) and common law (also known as judge-made law) are used to determine civil claims.

    There’s a famous case called Donoghue v Stevenson, which established that a person could get compensation for injury, loss and damage due to someone else’s negligence. It’s a 1932 British decision, but it’s still relevant to Australian law.

    In that case, a Scottish woman was drinking some ginger beer. She was emptying the remains of the ginger beer bottle into her glass. To her horror, a badly decomposed snail floated out of the bottle and into the glass. Later, she was severely ill with gastroenteritis.

    Because the woman’s friend had purchased the drink, the woman wasn’t allowed to claim for breach of contract against the ginger beer manufacturer. But the court (England’s House of Lords) decided that even though there was no contract between them, the manufacturer owed her a duty of care. It had breached the duty. The woman was entitled to damages for the illness and the shock she’d suffered.

    Even today, we continue to use these legal principles in negligence claims. In South Australia, many of these principles are also found in legislation. This means that medical negligence claims involve both legislation and common law.

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