CHICAGO, IL – If a patient is harmed as a result of negligent medical treatment in Illinois, the doctor, hospital or other medical providers may be held liable for medical malpractice. Physician’s in Illinois are expected to provide care according to a certain care, also known as the standard of care. When they stray away from that standard and cause injury to a patient, further illness, or death, it is considered medical malpractice.
What Constitutes Medical Malpractice in Illinois?
Medical malpractice involves any deviation in the standard of care that medical providers owe to their patient. The most common types of medical malpractice claims include:
- Diagnostic Errors
- Medication Errors
- Surgical Errors
- Anesthesia Errors
- Hospital Malpractice
- Emergency Room Malpractice
- Birth Injuries or Obstetrical Negligence
- Unauthorized Treatment
- Breach of Doctor-Patient Confidentiality
- Unnecessary medical treatment or procedures
Illinois Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
A “statute of limitations” refers to the law that sets a time limit on the right to file a lawsuit. Statute of limitations vary, meaning there are different deadlines for different types of cases.
In Illinois, the statute of limitations to file a medical malpractice lawsuit in Illinois is generally two years from the date the claimant knew or reasonably should have known of the injury. If a patient is under the age of 18 when the alleged medical malpractice occurred, the statute of limitations extends to eight years from the alleged act or omission; however, an act cannot be filed after the minor claimant’s 22nd birthday. If the claimant is mentally incompetent, the statute does not begin to run until the disability is removed.
If medical malpractice results in death, the wrongful death two-year statute of limitations period begins to run on the date of the decedent’s death.
Damages for Medical Malpractice Claims in Illinois
The plaintiff must prove the defendant is liable for medical malpractice for it to be ruled in their favor. In this case, he or she may be able to collect money damages for: medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, household services, and permanent disability and disfigurement.
Some states place damage caps on noneconomic damages (such as pain and suffering), but Illinois does not have any damage caps on medical malpractice damage awards.
Liability Issues Involved in Illinois Medical Malpractice Claims
Illinois follows a form of modified comparative negligence, where a medical malpractice action is barred only if the claimant’s contributory fault is more than 50% of the proximate cause of the injury or damage for which recovery is sought. If the claimant is less than 50% at fault for the injuries, he or she may still pursue a medical malpractice claim, but the financial recovery is reduced in proportion to the claimant’s percentage of fault.
Defendants in an Illinois medical malpractice lawsuit are jointly and severally liable for all damages. In other words, if there is more than one negligent party (such as a doctor and hospital), the plaintiff may file a malpractice claim seeking full recovery from any defendant.
There are legal issues involved with Illinois malpractice claims which makes them complex and involves a comprehensive factual investigation. It’s important to consult with a skilled Illinois medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible to review your case. If you or someone you loved has been injured due to a medical providers negligence, please contact the experienced medical malpractice attorney’s at Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. We understand the process can be difficult and stressful which is why we offer medical malpractice consultations for free. Please visit our website for more information.