What Happens when a Doctor’s Error Causes a Death?

Although we generally trust doctors with our health and safety, not all medical visits go as planned. Sadly, many people die each year while in their doctor’s care.

In many cases, the patient’s condition was too severe to be treatable. But, what happens when a doctor’s error causes a death? Will the doctor be held responsible for the suffering they’ve caused? If you’re not sure whether you’re eligible to file a claim for your family’s suffering because of a doctor’s negligence, reach out to a wrongful death lawyer in Chicago for help.

Doctor Errors and Malpractice

Unfortunately, not every case where a doctor makes a mistake is considered medical malpractice. Doctors are human, and though they’re held to a higher standard as medical professionals, mistakes can and do happen.

To determine whether you can file a lawsuit, the doctor in question must be deemed truly negligent. This might mean bringing in expert witnesses who can show that the doctor was careless with your loved one’s safety. If the death could have been avoided had the doctor taken reasonable care, you could be eligible to file a wrongful death claim

Filing a Wrongful Death Claim

Lawsuits involving the loss of another person are filed as wrongful death claims. The process can be lengthy, and, in Illinois, the claim must be filed within two years of your loved one’s death. If you attempt to file outside of the two years, you could lose the opportunity to recover compensation. A wrong death attorney in Chicago can help you understand the process.

Once you’ve determined the doctor or hospital group that’s financially responsible for your loss, you’ll also need to determine who can file the wrongful death claim. Because the deceased cannot file the claim, the court will assess who’s eligible to serve as a personal representative.

If the deceased didn’t select a personal representative, the court will assign one. This is usually a spouse or adult child, though in the case of a deceased minor, the parents will typically file. If a loved one died under the care of a doctor you believe was negligent, reach out to your lawyer for help.

An Attorney Can Guide You

If you don’t know what to do when a doctor’s error results in a death, reach out to a medical malpractice attorney in Chicago for help preparing your claim. The process can be overwhelming. A loved one just passed away, and you’ll need to show that it was the doctor’s fault and determine who’s eligible to file.

An attorney from Lane & Lane, LLC can guide you through these difficult steps. We understand how complex filing a wrongful death claim against a doctor can be, but we’ll explain the process and fight for your compensation.

If you’re struggling after the death of a loved one, and you believe the  doctor was at fault, reach out to an attorney for the necessary resources to support your claim. Call us at 312-332-1400 or fill out the online form below.

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