Medical Malpractice Depositions: Does the Defense Attorney Read Your Medical Records Before He Begins Asking You Questions?
Let’s start at the beginning.
What’s a deposition?
It’s a question and answer session that takes place in our conference room.
When you sue your doctor for medical malpractice, during your lawsuit you will have to answer questions from the attorneys who represent the doctors you sued.
This question and answer session is known as a deposition or an examination before trial. It’s pretrial testimony. It’s sworn testimony. The answers that you give carry the same exact weight as if you are testifying at trial.
You should know that before the defense lawyer ever steps into your attorney’s office, he will have obtained all of your medical records. The same ones that your attorney obtained to determine if you had a valid case.
The opposing lawyer will be asking you hundreds of questions over the course of many hours. It will often appear as if the lawyer who is asking the questions doesn’t know a thing about you or what went on with your doctor or hospital staff.
The entire time you’re being asked questions about what a doctor did or what they said, you’re wondering how much easier this would be if the attorney would simply have read your medical records to know the answer.
The problem is that the defense attorney likely did read all of your medical records. He likely wants to see if you’ll contradict yourself when you answer his questions.
Have questions about your matter that happened here in New York? If you have not yet started a lawsuit and are thinking of doing so, I invite you to call me at 516-487-8207. You know this is something I do every day and I’d love to talk to you.
The Top 5 Defences to Nova Scotia medical malpractice claims
Hi there. I’m medical malpractice John McKiggan. Today I want to tell you about about the Top 5 defenses to medical malpractice claims.
Medical malpractice claims often involve complicated questions about medical science, medical technology, and standards of care and risk assessment. Medical malpractice lawyers need to have a good understanding of anatomy, basic medical science, and the standards of professional medical practice in order to evaluate and pursue medical malpractice claims in Canada.
The five most common defences in malpractice claims are:
A doctor is responsible for protecting patients from risks that they can see or know about beforehand. In other words, they are responsible for protecting against foreseeable risks or dangers. The doctor may claim that the injury was an unforeseeable consequence of the medical treatment. For example one client we helped suffered serious injuries as a result of side effects from medication given to him by his doctor. The doctor argued that the side effects were so rare that they were not foreseeable.
2. Patient Caused or Contributed to the Injury:
The doctor may claim that the injury was caused by the patient not following proper medical advice. For example, in one case we reviewed the patient didn’t attend his appoint for a chest x-ray and eventually died from undiagnosed lung cancer.
3. Not a Recognized Risk:
If a doctor explains all the risks to the patient, and the patient agrees to assume those risks, the doctor is not responsible if those risks result in an injury. The doctor will claim that the patient’s particular injury was a recognized risk of the procedure and the risk was properly explained to the patient. In other words, the patient gave informed consent to undergo the risks of the procedure.
4. Someone Else Did It:
The doctor may claim that some other party was responsible for causing the injury. In one case we successfully settled, the doctor argued that the hospital’s faulty medical equipment, not the doctor’s negligent care, was responsible for my client’s serious brain injury.
5. Pre-Existing Injury:
The doctor may claim that the injury was caused by a previous illness or disease. For example, the doctor may claim that your disabling back pain was not the result of negligent surgery but due to pre-existing arthritis.
If you want more information about Medical malpractice claims call us for your copy of Health Scare: The Consumer’s Guide to Medical Malpractice Claims. This public legal education guide contains everything you need to know to protect your rights if you think you or a family member has been a victim of medical malpractice. The book is for sale on Amazon but we will send you a copy, at no charge, if you call us at 902-423-2050 or go to www.healthscarebook.ca
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