When we go to see a doctor, we rely on the extensive education of that doctor and their dedication to help people like us who are ill or who have had an accident. Most doctors, like other groups of people in our society, are careful with their work and are good people. But once in a while, a doctor makes a mistake that seriously injures or kills a patient. Other times, a doctor may cease to care about their patients because of drug abuse, money, mental illness, or some other issue. In this situation, there may be a case under medical malpractice law against the doctor.
The Statute of Limitations
One of the issues we see in medical malpractice suits is that sometimes the injured patient fails to file the lawsuit within the time permitted. Then, the case is dismissed, and the injured patient receives no compensation for the injuries the patient incurred. The statute of limitations for medical malpractice law in Georgia is two years from the date of the injury to file a case. An injured patient should not delay in seeking counsel.
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Damages for Breaching Medical Malpractice Law
If you are the victim of medical malpractice, you could recover several types of damages. The most common type of damages under medical malpractice law is called compensatory damages. These monetary awards are designed to make up for the financial losses you incurred because of the injury. These damages include, for example, medical expenses and lost wages from inability to work.
Another type of damages under medical malpractice law is called non-economic damages. These types of damages have that label because you can’t calculate them precisely like you can with out-of-pocket expenses or lost wages. The primary non-economic damage to an injured patient is the pain and suffering that patient experiences as a result of medical malpractice.
Finally, punitive damages are possible under the medical malpractice law. These damages are designed to punish the doctor who hurt you. But these damages are less common because there must be clear and convincing evidence that the doctor engaged in willful misconduct, malice, or fraud when taking care of the injured patient.
If you have been harmed by a doctor, you should consult with a medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. There is no point waiting until the two-year limitations period is about to run to seek professional help to recover your damages.