Top 5 Questions About Medical Malpractice in Pennsylvania

Scartelli Olszewski P.C.

The Scranton and Wilkes-Barre medical malpractice attorneys at Scartelli Olszewski often field questions from people who are angry or frustrated with their doctors. They want to know whether we can help them seek justice for what they think is medical malpractice. The answer is not always simple, however. Many misunderstandings persist about what actually constitutes a medical malpractice case in Pennsylvania. Read on to get a better understanding of whether you have a potential med mal case.

What constitutes medical malpractice in Pennsylvania?

Your unhappiness with the way your doctor has handled your treatment does not mean that the doctor has committed medical malpractice in the legal sense. Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider – often a physician, but sometimes a physician assistant (PA), nurse, medical technician, or other medical professional – deviates in the accepted Standard of Care and harms a patient. In general, the patient and their attorneys must prove through expert witnesses that the healthcare provider was either negligent or incompetent in the performance of their duties, that the negligence or incompetence caused an injury to the patient, (for example, death, chronic pain or loss of wages).

What are some examples of injuries for which people sue?

When someone dies as a result of medical malpractice, a wrongful death and/or survival action is filed.Examples of serious, life-changing injuries include cerebral palsy in a newborn caused by a mismanaged birth, a delayed diagnosis of cancer, a brain injury sustained during a surgical procedure, the amputation of an arm or a leg due to mismanaged treatment of an infection, and so on. For an in-depth look at the most common injuries sustained as a result of medical negligence or incompetence, visit the med mal section of our website.

What if the victim of medical malpractice is a minor?

When a child under the age of 18 is injured by medical malpractice, the parent or guardian of the minor may file the lawsuit on their behalf, if no lawsuit is filed by the parent on behalf of the child, the child has 2 years from their 18th birthday to file a lawsuit.

Do I have to pay my lawyer in advance to help me with my lawsuit?

You do not need to worry about how you will pay for a valid med mal lawsuit when you choose the Pennsylvania med mal attorneys of Scartelli Olszewski. If we evaluate your case and think it has legal merit, we will represent you on a contingency fee basis. You don’t pay anything up front or during the prosecution of your medical malpractice lawsuit. We receive our payment as a share of the settlement or verdict that you receive from the defendants when your case is concluded.

How long do I have to file a lawsuit?

In general, Pennsylvania medical malpractice law sets out a statute of limitations of two years. That means you have up to two years from the date of the alleged medical malpractice incident or from the date you learned of the incident or harm to file a lawsuit.Of course, it is not always possible to easily attach a precise date to the moment that a healthcare professional made a particular mistake. Medical malpractice sometimes takes place over many months, spanning numerous interactions between a patient and their healthcare providers.Scartelli Olszewski’s experienced Pennsylvania medical malpractice attorneys conduct thorough investigations and if the case has merit aggressively pursue medical malpractice cases in order to help our clients seek the justice they deserve. If you or a loved one think you have suffered a serious injury due to medical malpractice, please call our office at 877-353-0529 as soon as possible to discuss the details of your case. If your claim has merit, we can help you file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires.