When a doctor or another health care provider is negligent in their care, patients can suffer hundreds of thousands - if not millions - of dollars in losses. Because the losses can be valued at extremely large amounts of money, many states have passed laws, statutory caps, that specifically limit the amount of money you can seek after being the victim of medical malpractice. These so-called "damage caps" are specifically intended to place a maximum limit on the amount a victim can seek for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. Maryland, for example, has a cap of $770,000 for non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases for injuries that occurred in 2016.
The District of Columbia is in the minority of states that have no statutory caps or constitutional prohibition regarding any damages in a medical malpractice case, whether they are economic or non-economic. To be sure, economic damages are those that can be easily quantified, such as medical bills or the cost of rehabilitative treatment; non-economic damages, on the other hand, are more intangible, such as pain and suffering or loss of quality of life. For this reason, patients who have suffered severe injuries due to medical malpractice may be able to recover significantly more compensation in D.C. than they would in many surrounding states. Because of the lack of damage cap, it can be highly preferable to file your medical malpractice claim in D.C. courts whenever possible and an experienced medical malpractice attorney can identify if that is a possibility in your case.
Common Damages in D.C. Medical Malpractice Cases
Since there is no damage cap, patients filing medical malpractice claims in Washington, D.C. can often seek compensation for the following losses:
- Medical expenses - This includes all costs of treatment you needed for your unnecessary injuries caused by the malpractice, as well as the estimated cost of future treatment you will require.
- Lost income - Many medical malpractice injuries can prevent you from working and you have the right to recover for lost wages and the estimated value of your future lost earning potential.
- Pain and suffering - Many injuries and health conditions can cause serious physical pain and suffering and medical experts can help to value how much pain you experienced.
- Emotional distress - Having a serious misdiagnosis or surgical error can cause depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders that require treatment.
- Wrongful death - If you are a surviving family member of someone who died due to medical malpractice, you have the right to bring a claim and recover for your pain and suffering, as well as monetary losses.
Contact a DC Medical Malpractice Attorney for a Free Consultation Today
If you think you may have been the victim of medical malpractice in Washington D.C. or surrounding areas, you should not delay in discussing your situation with a highly skilled medical malpractice attorney. There are strict time limits for filing this type of claim and you do not want to lose your right to recover for your losses, which often can be significant. At The Casper Firm, LLC, our experienced legal team is committed to standing up for the rights of patients who were injured by medical negligence and we can certainly advise you of your rights and help you recover whenever possible. Please call to discuss a possible medical malpractice case for free at 888-387-3878 today.