Atlanta Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Medical Malpractice Damages
If you've sustained serious injuries during medical treatment, or if a member of your family died during a medical procedure, you probably wonder if the healthcare provider was negligent and liable for damages. The Georgia medical malpractice lawyers at The Law Offices of Wayne Grant, P.C., understand the complexity of state malpractice laws. They can explain whether your claim is valid and if the cost of pursuing the claim does not exceed the compensation to which you could be entitled.
Medical Malpractice Compensation in Georgia
Injured parties receive justice in the civil court system through monetary awards called damages. There are two categories of damages: compensatory and punitive. Your lawyers will advise you exactly what damages apply to your situation.
Compensatory damages include economic and noneconomic losses that are directly consequent of the injury.
Actual economic losses, past and future, include these:
- The cost of reasonable and necessary medical expenses for treatment of injuries
- The cost of domestic services
- The loss of earnings
Non-economic damages address the injury itself, past and future:
- Physical and psychological harm
- The reduced enjoyment of life
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental pain and suffering
The second category of medical malpractice damages is punitive. Punitive damages are a punishment imposed only if it the injured party clearly proves that the medical provider acted with willful misconduct, malice, fraud, wantonness, oppression or conscious indifference to consequences.
Who Is Eligible for Medical Malpractice Damages in Georgia?
The person who sustained the actual injury is, of course, eligible for compensation. Depending upon the situation, damages awarded to a spouse or children include loss of care, companionship, support, guidance, love and affection.
In the case of an injured child, there are separate claims for the minor child and the parent. The child's damages can include physical pain and suffering, mental pain and suffering, future medical expenses and future income loss that will occur after the child attains the age of majority at 18. The parents are eligible for compensation for all medical and other necessary expenses relative to the child's injury prior to the child's 18th birthday, along with loss of the child's services.
In the event of a wrongful death, immediate family members generally pursue the claim. Immediate family members usually refer to lineal descent. Medical negligence damages include medical and burial expenses, loss of financial support, loss of pensions and insurance coverage, loss of inheritance, emotional suffering and loss of care, protection, companionship and family relationship.
Caps on Medical Malpractice Compensation
In 2005, the legislature imposed caps on non-economic damages of $350,000 per defendant and $1,050,000 for all defendants. In 2010, however, the Georgia Supreme Court held the cap to be unconstitutional by nullifying the jury's ability to award damages based on the facts in a case. As a result, there are currently no caps on compensatory damages.
Punitive damages are limited to $250,000 unless the act involves intentional harm, drugs or alcohol.
Contact a Top Georgia Lawyer Today
Professional negligence is negligence at its worst. Granted, everyone makes mistakes. However, when you trust your health and your life to a medical provider, and sustain injury in the course of that care, the consequences can be catastrophic or even deadly. The medical malpractice attorneys at The Law Offices of Wayne Grant, P.C., are only a call, an email or a click away. If you want to discuss a potential case, please call us at (866) 249-5513 or (404) 995-3955. You can also use our case review form or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.