DC Military Medical Malpractice Lawyer
When you serve in the military, your dependents should have access to excellent medical care, whether you’re stationed in the U.S. or abroad. Likewise, retired service members should be able to expect high-quality care at Veterans Administration (VA) hospitals and similar facilities.
Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Due to medical negligence, you or your loved ones might suffer from serious injuries and permanent harm.
If you’re a military dependent or a non-active duty person who was injured in a military medical facility, you might be entitled to financial compensation. Military family members and non-active duty members have a right to hold the U.S. government accountable for medical malpractice.
At Bertram Law Group, PLLC, we’ve helped military families secure compensation through the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), which allows you to file a medical malpractice claim against the government.
To learn more, contact us now to schedule a free consultation. Our military medical malpractice lawyers in Washington, D.C. will be ready to meet with you to learn about your situation and to discuss your legal options.
Trust Our Experienced Lawyers with Your Military Medical Malpractice Claim
Medical malpractice cases against the government are handled under the Federal Tort Claims Act, which is a highly complex area of law. When searching for military medical malpractice lawyers in Washington, D.C., it’s essential that you choose someone who is experienced in this field.
Here are some of the benefits of choosing Bertram Law Group, PLLC:
- Experience with Military Medical Malpractice – Our legal team has local roots in Washington, D.C., and we are located less than 3 miles from the Department of Justice. As a result, we are well acquainted with the challenges that military families face on a regular basis. When medical malpractice occurs, this can put even more strain on families. With over 25 years of handling these cases, we can navigate the Federal Tort Claims Act process with ease.
- Proven Track Record for Military Families – For decades, our military medical malpractice lawyers in Washington, D.C. have secured sizable verdicts and settlements for injured people just like you. We understand that you and your family simply want to recover from your injuries and move on. With financial compensation, you can start putting your life back together. We’ll fight on your behalf every step of the way to get the compensation you deserve.
- Full Case Review by our Medical Team – For military families, filing a medical malpractice lawsuit is a big decision. We’ll make it easier for you to weigh your options with a full case review at the outset. Our nurse or doctor that we keep on retainer can review your medical records and determine whether it’s likely that negligence occurred. This allows you to decide if proceeding with your claim is the best decision for you and your family.
Medical Malpractice Claims Brought by Non-Active-Duty Members and Dependents
If you’re thinking of filing a military medical malpractice claim, you might be wondering who exactly is eligible to file.
Unfortunately, active-duty members cannot file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the government for negligence that was caused by an active-duty military doctor or facility. This is known as the “Feres Doctrine.” However, active-duty soldiers can file a lawsuit if their dependent was injured due to medical malpractice.
Injured people eligible to file a claim include:
- Military dependents (such as a spouse) who were harmed due to negligence by a military medical facility or military healthcare professional
- Active-duty soldiers with a dependent who was harmed by a military medical facility or military healthcare professional (for instance, a soldier whose wife dies due to military medical malpractice can file a lawsuit)
- Veterans or retired military personnel who were harmed at a VA hospital or other federal healthcare facility during retirement
Common Types of Medical Malpractice at Military Medical Facilities
When it comes to military medical malpractice lawsuits, some of the most common types of negligence include:
Were you recently harmed due to the above types of military medical negligence? If so, you might be entitled to financial compensation under the Federal Tort Claims Act.
Injuries That Often Result from Negligent Medical Errors at Military Facilities
Victims of military medical negligence suffer from a wide range of injuries, including:
- Brain Damage – This is one of the most devastating types of injuries that can result from medical negligence. People with brain damage might suffer from permanent personality changes, serious medical conditions requiring long-term care, and disabilities. This type of injury often occurs due to hypoxia (lack of oxygen), anesthesia errors, surgical mistakes, and physical trauma.
- Birth Injuries – Medical negligence can quickly turn the best moment of your family’s life into a devastating experience. Improper prenatal treatment, as well as negligence during and immediately after delivery, can cause birth injuries. These types of injuries include brain damage, facial paralysis, cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy, Klumpke’s palsy, and more.
- Worsening Conditions – Patients who receive a misdiagnosis or have a delayed diagnosis often aren’t able to get proper treatment in time. This can cause minor medical conditions to worsen, resulting in irreversible harm that could have been prevented with early treatment.
- Death – In worst-case scenarios, military medical negligence can be fatal. This is common in cases of brain injury or delayed diagnosis.
How the Federal Tort Claims Act Applies to Military Medical Malpractice Cases
Military medical facilities, as well as VA hospitals, are federal government agencies. Therefore, when these facilities cause harm due to medical negligence, the government can be held accountable because of the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA). This law allows federal employees or soldiers to file certain types of lawsuits, including claims for medical malpractice, against the federal government.
When filing a claim for military medical malpractice under the FTCA, you typically have two years from the date of negligence or two years from the date you discovered the negligence. However, it’s best to contact an attorney before this date. This will give you enough time to have the case reviewed and to prepare and file the claim.
The first step in the administrative process is filing a claim on a form that’s known as a “Standard Form 95.” On this document, you’ll need to state all the basic facts of the case, including the basis for your claim, the liable parties, and the full amount of damages. “Damages” is a legal term that refers to the ways you’ve been harmed, such as pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages.
It’s important to keep in mind that any compensation awarded will be limited to the amount of damages you initially claimed. This is why it’s important to consult with an experienced attorney who can help you determine the full extent of your damages and identify how much compensation you should demand.
After filing, the medical facility will then have six months to review your claim. They will either:
- Pay your claim in full
- Try to settle for a lower amount
- Reject the claim
If they fail to respond to the claim by the six-month deadline, this is considered a rejection of the claim. If your claim is rejected, you then have six months to file a lawsuit in federal court.
When filing a lawsuit in federal court, you have no right to a jury trial, according to the Federal Tort Claims Act. As a result, the judge alone will determine if the federal government was responsible for your injuries and to what extent.
Types of Compensation Potentially Available for Victims of Military Medical Malpractice
Victims of military medical malpractice are entitled to different types of compensation, such as:
- General Damages – Compensation for general damages covers non-economic harm. This includes pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, mental distress after the wrongful death of your loved one, and more.
- Economic Damages – Compensation for economic damages includes the cost of medical care, medical equipment, diagnostic testing, hospital bills, and lost wages.
- Future Damages – Your future losses can also be taken into consideration when determining your compensation. This includes future loss of income, reduced earning capacity, and future costs of medical care.
Get a Free Claim Review and Advice from Our Experienced Military Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Are you a non-active duty service member who was harmed due to military medical negligence? Were your dependents injured at a military medical facility? In either case, the experienced legal team at Bertram Law Group, PLLC can help.
We’ve helped military dependents and non-active duty service members hold negligent doctors accountable through the Federal Tort Claims Act. While financial compensation can’t undo your injuries, it can help restore peace of mind and allow you to focus on putting your life back together.
If you believe you have a valid claim, it’s important to speak with an attorney right away. To schedule a free case evaluation, contact our military medical malpractice lawyers in Washington, D.C. now.