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Imagine the following scenario: Your doctor, surgeon, or other healthcare provider make a negligent mistake while treating you, and you develop a serious new injury or illness because of it. Thankfully, you were able to get compensation through a medical malpractice claim.
There’s just one problem: your health has worsened since your claim finalized, and now your expenses are much higher than you originally anticipated. This is a more common scenario than many people think, as the consequences of medical malpractice can be unpredictable, and not all complications are immediately apparent, even months later.
If this happens to you, are you eligible to file a second claim and get money for your new malpractice-related health problems?
Unfortunately, you can’t file another claim for medical malpractice after your first claim finalizes, provided the second claim is related to the same injury or illness that was addressed by the first claim. That’s why it’s important to be evaluated and diagnosed in as thorough a manner as possible by a doctor or specialist after suffering from a medical malpractice injury or illness.
With the help of an experienced medical malpractice attorney, your claim can be built to account for current and future healthcare costs, including complications you may not have experienced yet but are likely to suffer in the months or years to come.
You may be able to file a second claim if it addresses another aspect of medical malpractice separate from your first claim that you couldn’t have been aware of when your first claim was in progress.
For example, if your surgeon made a negligent mistake while operating that caused immediate complications, and then you later discover that he also left a surgical tool inside your body that causes a different set of complications, you may be able to file two separate claims—especially if the surgical tool wasn’t discovered until after the first claim finalized.
Some patients are victims of medical malpractice on multiple fronts. They may be misdiagnosed by their doctors and then receive the wrong medications from their pharmacies. Or they may be victims of surgical malpractice while undergoing procedures, and then be further injured by negligent rehabilitation clinics and specialists.
Provided the statute of limitations hasn’t expired, victims can file medical malpractice claims against one party and then file second claims against another party as long as both parties are each responsible for a separate act of malpractice. These claims may run concurrently or back-to-back. Note, however, that Ohio’s statute of limitations on medical malpractice claims is short. With a few exceptions, victims have just one year to take action against negligent medical providers and facilities.
Medical malpractice claims are already difficult to navigate. Doctors, hospitals, and insurance companies are always on guard against these claims, and they almost always put up a fierce fight when victims try to get compensation. Filing additional claims, whether they’re at the same time or after the first claim concludes, can be even more difficult.
At Nurenberg, Paris, Heller & McCarthy, our Cleveland medical malpractice lawyers know that discovering negligence in these claims isn’t always straightforward. Injuries and illnesses can take time to show up, and not all complications are immediately noticeable or even related. That’s why we work hard to help our clients get the money they deserve for ALL of their malpractice-related damages.
Contact us today for a free consultation. We’ll put our decades of medical malpractice claim experience to work for you and your loved ones.
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