Medical Malpractice: What does It Involve?

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Medical malpractice occurs when a hospital or healthcare professional provides a substandard treatment that causes an injury to the patients. The negligence might happen because of a wrong diagnosis, treatment, aftercare, or health management.

This article will discuss medical malpractice and when you can file a claim for it.

Examples of common medical malpractice cases

Medical malpractice cases are not that usual. However, we can still see some cases like those below.

  • Birth injury
  • Missed diagnosis
  • Surgical errors
  • Obstetrics & Gynaecology malpractice
  • Failure to timely or properly treat a condition
  • Anesthesia errors
  • Prescription errors
  • Post-treatment errors

How can you prove a medical malpractice claim?

To prove medical negligence, you need to provide evidence for your claim. Your claim will be valid if you can prove the following things.

  • You were a patient who needed a duty of care from a medical provider.
  • The service and treatment you received were below standard. No medical professional should treat you like this. This will represent a breach of duty done by a medical professional.
  • The injury is foreseeable, and the responsible person can handle it.
  • As a result of their negligence, you have got injuries.
  • The injury causes substantial, demonstrable damages.

The phases of a medical malpractice claim

Proving medical malpractice is a quite complex process. It usually involves a significant amount of time and a lot of litigation processes. After your lawyer decides you have a valid claim, they will file a lawsuit. The lawsuit contains the names of all defendants.

You have to follow the below stages one by one.

Document Discovery

Both parties will try to gather as much information as possible in this phase. You will be asked a lot of written questions during this time. You also need to obtain documents and medical records. Not only the documents of the incidents, but you might also have to provide a complete medical history.

You may also have to hand over your income and financial losses documents. The plaintiff used these documents to build the case against the defendants. The more proof you can submit, the more strong your case can be.

Examinations for Discovery

This is also a key phase where each side learns about the other parties properly. They can examine others by asking questions. Note that every incident will be recorded in this stage. Each party’s legal representative will try to get information about the injuries, medical history, and every relatable detail.

Chamber Application

As a normal part of litigation, you might file several applications and attend hearings for those applications.


A party can ask another one to attend mediation before going to trial. The goal of this phase is to reach a mutual agreement or settlement without involving the formalities of the court. It saves a lot of time and hassle of going to trial.


If the mediation doesn’t work out, the trial process will begin. Normally, the trials start a couple of years later or more after the incident.

After the final verdict, one party can appeal the decision that may start the overall process again.

Compensation for a medical malpractice claim

A victim of medical malpractice can claim compensation based on their injuries and additional damages they suffer. The damages include:

  • Loss of income and earning capacity due to physical or mental challenges
  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Cost for long-term care
  • Loss of household contributions, economic support, and inheritance in the case of death of a family member

How much compensation can you receive?

The Supreme Court of Canada fixed an amount of compensation. The general damages or non-pecuniary damages include pain and suffering, loss of amenities, and loss of enjoyment of life. The compensation amount may be $381,481.48 and is adjusted for inflation over time.

Deadline for filing a claim

There is a limitation period for starting malpractice lawsuits. Usually, the time limit is two years from the date you have acknowledged that there is a malpractice incident.

However, the time limit is exactly two years from the incident in case of death, regardless of whether you are aware.

Bottom Line

So far, you have seen all the basic information about medical malpractice. You see, it’s quite a devastating moment to face such a difficult situation.

Hence, it’s better to contact a lawyer as soon as possible and file a lawsuit without wasting a moment. Hopefully, you can overcome such difficulty.