Miller & Zois has some of Maryland’s most successful and respected medical malpractice lawyers. We believe – we sincerely believe – that we can help you if you have been severely harmed by medical negligence in Maryland.
Our Baltimore malpractice attorneys have earned millions in compensation for victims of medical negligence. Our law firm handles medical negligence lawsuits throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C.
Below are answers to your questions about how to start a malpractice case in Maryland, what it takes to win these lawsuits, and how much compensation you can expect if you win. We also discuss our track records of success and why we believe we are the right attorneys to maximize the value of your serious injury or wrongful death claim.
On This Page:
- Proving Medical Malpractice in Maryland
- Your Chances of Winning a Malpractice Lawsuit
- Average Settlement Value of Malpractice Lawsuit
- Baltimore Malpractice Lawyers at Miller & Zois
- What Is Medical Malpractice?
- How Do You Know If You Have a Malpractice Case?
- How Do You Prove Malpractice?
- How Long Does a Malpractice Case Take?
- What Is the Statute of Limitations on Medical Malpractice?
- What Is the Most Common Type of Malpractice?
- What Are My Odds of Winning a Malpractice Case?
- How Much Money Can You Get in a Medical Malpractice Case?
Proving Medical Malpractice in Maryland
Our Maryland medical malpractice lawyers represent victims of medical negligence and their families in malpractice lawsuits against doctors, hospitals, and nursing homes.
Under Maryland law, medical negligence occurs when a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare professional injures a patient with negligent or inappropriate medical care. The consequences of medical malpractice are life-altering. If an accountant or other professional provides negligent services, it typically just costs you money. Medical neglect and malpractice can cost your health and your life.
Settlement Compensation or Jury Payout Is Only Remedy for Injustice
Poor medical care can result in permanent physical injuries and sometimes death if a doctor or hospital provides poor medical care. In many cases, the harm caused by healthcare providers’ neglect can never be undone. Instead, our legal system offers victims of medical malpractice financial compensation if the health care provider breached the standard of care.
Elements You Need to Prove
Doctors and hospitals in Baltimore are not in the habit of admitting that they committed malpractice. If you want financial compensation for malpractice injuries, you must show that you are legally entitled to it. To have a valid medical malpractice lawsuit in Maryland, you need to be able to prove two things:
- The doctor’s care deviated from accepted medical standards or practices, and
- This deviation from standard medical practices caused your injury.
Establishing each element is a complex and expensive process that evolves throughout the litigation. For starters, the plaintiff needs another doctor to act as an expert witness. Maryland medical malpractice law requires all lawsuits to be supported by a qualified expert opinion confirming that the case has merit. This is called a certificate of merit.
Getting an opinion from another doctor that your case is valid is just the first step and does not guarantee success. The defendants will present their experts, who will say that the doctors did nothing wrong and your claims have no merit.
- This video explains the seven steps of a Maryland malpractice lawsuit
Your Chances of Winning a Medical Negligence Case in Baltimore
If you are considering pursuing a medical malpractice claim, you want to know your chances of winning. Winning is defined as getting financial compensation by settlement or a jury verdict.
Once you retain a lawyer and file a medical malpractice lawsuit in court, your chances of getting financial compensation are excellent. Three out of every four medical malpractice plaintiffs end up getting financial compensation.
Approximately 70% of medical malpractice lawsuits filed in the U.S. are resolved with an out-of-court settlement without trial. Only about 10-15% of malpractice cases go to trial. Doctors win 80% to 90% of those cases that go to trial.
These are national percentages. Our success rate at Miller & Zois in Baltimore malpractice lawsuits is significantly higher.
Average Settlement Value of Maryland Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical malpractice cases are much more valuable than any other personal injury case. Nationally, medical malpractice claims have an average settlement value of around $300,000 to $380,000. The median settlement in medical malpractice lawsuits is slightly lower at $250,000. For malpractice lawsuits against healthcare providers that go to trial and win, the average jury verdict nationally is just over $1 million.
Keep in mind that these are national averages. Maryland’s average and median settlement value of medical malpractice cases is significantly higher than the national average. The Baltimore average settlement value is also higher than the Maryland average.
Common Types of Medical Malpractice Cases in Baltimore
Medical malpractice regularly occurs in all medical fields and clinical settings, from the operating room of a major hospital to the exam table of your family doctor or urgent care facility. There are certain types of medical mishaps that most frequently result in lawsuits. Diagnostic errors, birth injuries, and surgical mistakes comprise the bulk of the malpractice claims our Baltimore attorneys handle.
Diagnostic malpractice includes misdiagnosis and failure to diagnose, which often overlap. Accurately diagnosing your medical problem is one of the most important things a doctor does. When a healthcare provider fails to diagnose a condition or incorrectly diagnoses it as something else, it results in incorrect or delayed treatment, which can cause significant harm.
This is why misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, and delayed diagnosis
are the most common types of healthcare provider negligence claims. Delay in diagnosing cancer, specifically breast and colon cancer, is the most common type of diagnostic malpractice claim.
Birth injuries like cerebral palsy give rise to many medical negligence cases against OB/GYNs and hospitals in Baltimore. The reason for this is simple: many birth injuries directly result from medical negligence during labor and delivery.
This is because obstetric complications often occur before or during childbirth and must be resolved in a concise window of time. Common examples of pregnancy and delivery complications include:
- shoulder dystocia
- placental abruption
- uterine rupture
- fetal macrosomia
- umbilical cord prolapse
- C-section and other delays in labor and delivery.
These complications are well known, and OB/GYNs are trained to respond to them. A skilled, experienced doctor and delivery team should be able to handle these complications and deliver the baby without severe injury or death. Poor communication and rushed decision-making by the medical staff often result in injury.
The most common type of birth injury mistakes occurs when doctors fail to perform a timely emergency C-section in response to signs of fetal distress. Another common birth injury claim involves negligent misuse of birth assistance tools such as obstetrical forceps and vacuum pump extractors.
Sadly, medical mistakes during childbirth often have the most devastating consequences of any type of medical mistake. Most delivery error suits involve damage to the baby’s brain due to prolonged oxygen deprivation. Many brain injuries are almost exclusively caused by medical negligence during delivery: cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy, and HIE.
Surgical negligence includes any type of mistake or medical negligence related to a surgical procedure or post-operative care. When performing medical procedures, surgeons (and supporting doctors and staff) are held to the same standard of care required of all doctors. A surgeon must perform each surgery with the skill and care reasonably employed by other surgeons under similar circumstances.
Surgical malpractice happens more often than people think. One recent report estimated that 10% of post-surgical deaths result from preventable medical errors. Some common types of surgical malpractice include:
- Gallbladder removal surgery
- Wrong-site surgery
- Anesthesia errors
- Surgical infections
- Gastric bypass surgery
- Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
- Laparoscopic intestinal surgery
Hospitals are legally obligated to ensure a certain level of care for all patients. This means hospitals can be directly liable if they fail to deliver the proper level of care, resulting in severe injury or death. Moreover, hospitals are vicariously liable for the actions of their employees, such as nurses, technicians, and doctors. There is an excellent chance that the hospital will have some liability in addition to the doctor for a mistake made at the hospital. (see also Emergency Room Malpractice)
From a plaintiff’s perspective, hospitals are more favorable defendants than medical professionals. There are several reasons why it’s sometimes easier to go after a hospital for a medical error.
First, juries tend to hold individual doctors in high esteem and give them the benefit of the doubt. The same is not true for hospitals. Juries are much more willing to lay blame on hospitals as opposed to individual doctors.
Hospitals also make better malpractice defendants because they are more likely to settle cases. Hospitals are businesses. They will settle injury and wrongful death malpractice cases to protect their image and keep stories of attorneys and malpractice out of the news.
Finally, many jurors have already had a bad experience with a hospital. Baltimore hospital malpractice lawyers want jurors who have had experience with a Baltimore hospital because so many have had an awful experience.
Medication errors involve administering or prescribing incorrect medication and related forms of medication-related negligence. Claims based on medication errors can be brought against doctors, pharmacies, and other healthcare professionals involved in the prescribing and administering drugs.
Below is a list of the types of medication errors that our medical malpractice attorneys frequently see that result in viable claims:
- Wrong Drug Combination: Patients are injured when they take two prescription medications that dangerously interact with each other. The prescribing doctors and the pharmacies involved can be liable in this situation.
- Incorrect Medication: Doctors, nurses, or pharmacies administer the wrong drug. When this mistake injures the patient, a clear claim for malpractice exists.
- Side-Effect Injuries: When doctors prescribe medication, they are supposed to be aware of the potential side effects of a drug. Prescribing doctors must ensure that the risk of the medication does not outweigh its benefits. When medication side effects injure a patient, they may have an action against the doctor.
Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are licensed healthcare providers who can be sued for mistakes like hospitals and doctors. Lawsuits against nursing homes usually involve some type of neglect. These facilities are notorious for being chronically understaffed, and elderly residents fail to get the care and attention they are medically entitled to. Nursing home neglect commonly leads to injuries such as bedsores, falls, malnutrition or dehydration, and other health problems, often fatal for elderly patients.
Some nursing home lawsuits involve mental or physical abuse of residents by staff. This can include assault and battery, excessive use of physical restraints, sexual abuse, overmedication, and other types of improper and abusive mistreatment.
Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers Miller & Zois
Miller & Zois is the Baltimore medical malpractice firm many judges, lawyers, and doctors have turned to after a catastrophic injury or wrongful death due to a medical provider’s mistake. Why? First, our results speak volumes. We have gotten these results because we know how these cases work. We know the medicine. Our malpractice attorneys have years of experience and the tenacity to put you in a position to get the top settlement or jury award at trial.
While most of our lawsuits against doctors and nurses result in a favorable settlement, our lawyers are more than willing to take deserving cases to a jury. Last year, we delivered over $12 million to our client in malpractice settlements and verdicts. The year before, our Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers took two malpractice lawsuits to trial, winning both cases totaling $2 million. The combined offer to settle those cases before trial was $200,000. Our last medical malpractice victory in Baltimore City was for $10 million. Our malpractice lawyers earned a $5.2 million verdict in Baltimore the year before.
Miller & Zois stands apart from other malpractice law firms because we have the experience, resources, and skills to win these cases — and the past results to prove it. We ensure the days when a Maryland doctor can bury their mistakes are past.
Our Lawyers Cover All of Maryland
We also win cases outside of Baltimore. So many people are looking for a “medical malpractice lawyer near me” instead of finding the best medical malpractice attorney in Maryland who can get them the most money.
Our last malpractice trial in P.G. County led to a $5.5 million verdict. Another client was recently awarded $1.5 million in a case in Baltimore County. The insurance company refused to make any settlement offer at all. We followed that up a few months later with a $10 million jury award against the University of Maryland Medical Systems. Another jury awarded our client $5.5 million in Prince George’s County. Make no mistake. The best medical malpractice lawyers in Maryland are the ones who consistently obtain outstanding jury awards for their clients.
The top Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers take cases to trial. We do. These jury results get attention. Far more quietly, we deliver even greater results for our clients in confidential settlements in cases few will hear about because most of our medical malpractice cases settle successfully before trial. Last year, we recovered over $10 million for our clients in Maryland cases. What you can expect from us – and what our past and present clients will tell you – is that if our medical malpractice lawyers take your case, our attorneys will fight for you with every weapon we have.
Not many Maryland malpractice law firms have achieved the results for their clients that Miller & Zois has. We win so many of these cases because we only take a claim to trial if we are 100% convinced the doctor made a mistake and the injuries result from medical errors. Our attorneys have no problem taking on a tough case. But our team has to honestly believe in the claim before we will accept the claim.
The take-home message for you? If you are looking for a malpractice lawyer to fight for you, Miller & Zois has a real history of success with insurance companies and hospitals throughout Maryland. You do not want a malpractice lawyer “near me.” You want the best lawyer you can find. Our top-rated Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys will put our experience to work for you.
If we think you can win, we will help you. There is no fee or cost to you if we do not get a recovery for you. Call 800-553-8082 or get a free online consultation.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice occurs anytime a doctor, hospital, or healthcare provider acts negligently, and that negligent act results in injury or death to the patient. A healthcare provider acts negligently if they deviate from the applicable professional standards of care.
How Do You Know If You Have a Medical Malpractice Case in Maryland?
Knowing whether you have a medical malpractice claim is often very difficult because doctors rarely admit to mistakes. If you suspect medical negligence, the only way to know if you have a case is to consult a malpractice lawyer.
Our attorneys look for two things to determine whether you have a viable lawsuit: (1) did the provider’s treatment breach the standard of care, and (2) Did that breach result in serious physical injury?
If we think you may have a good malpractice case, our attorneys take the investigation to the next level. We consult with qualified medical experts (from the relevant medical specialties) and pay them to review the facts of your case.
How Do You Prove Medical Malpractice in Maryland?
A medical malpractice claim must be proven by presenting expert opinion testimony from other doctors. The plaintiff in a medical malpractice case needs to find another doctor willing to testify that the defendant was negligent and breached the standard of medical care.
How Long Does a Medical Malpractice Case Take in Baltimore?
After your initial consultation with your lawyer, getting the necessary expert opinions and filing the lawsuit usually takes 4-6 months. Once the lawsuit is filed, most cases take between 16 to 24 months before a final resolution. Baltimore malpractice lawsuits move slightly quicker than most malpractice suits in Maryland.
What Is The Statute of Limitations on Medical Malpractice in Maryland?
In Maryland, the statute of limitations on a claim for medical malpractice is three years. The three-year period begins to run from the date that the plaintiff discovered (or should have discovered) the injury resulting from the malpractice. See Md. Code Ann., Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-109.
There are several exceptions to this 3-year rule. For example, if the plaintiff is a minor at the time of the injury, they will have until their 21st birthday to file a malpractice claim.
There are so many exceptions to these rules… when in any doubt, call a malpractice lawyer to get a handle on the deadline to file a malpractice lawsuit in your case.
What Is the Most Common Type of Medical Malpractice Case?
Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose is the most common medical malpractice case. Diagnostic errors account for roughly 40% of malpractice claims.
What Are My Odds of Winning a Medical Malpractice Suit in Maryland?
For medical malpractice cases that go to trial, plaintiffs only win about 21% of the time. However, at least 70% of malpractice cases get resolved in pre-trial settlements. This means that around three out of every four plaintiffs who file a medical malpractice case end up getting money.
How Much Money Can You Get in Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawsuits?
The national average payout in a medical malpractice lawsuit is around $250,000. This includes both settlements and verdicts. The average settlement value of a medical malpractice case in Maryland (particularly in Baltimore) is significantly higher than the national average. Our law firm’s average settlement dwarfs that $250,000 statistic.
Contact Us About a Free Malpractice Claim Consultation in Maryland
If you live in the Baltimore-Washington area and you or a family member is a victim of a doctor or nurse’s mistake, you need the most compassion AND the best lawyers who will fight to get you the best possible result. We do this very well. Our lawyers are listed in Best Lawyers and SuperLawyers for a reason.
Put our experience handling medical negligence cases to work for you. You need legal advice and action to guide you through this. Our top-rated malpractice attorneys will review the facts and medicine in your case, consult with the top medical experts, tell you your legal rights, and help you chart the best path forward to win the settlement compensation or jury payout you deserve for what you have endured.
Call Miller & Zois today at 800-553-8082 or get a free online case review.