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Types of Malpractice Lawsuits

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What Is Malpractice?

Malpractice occurs when a professional is negligent or fails to act in accordance with professional standards. When malpractice causes an injury to a client, the client may be able to seek legal remedies by bringing a lawsuit.

What’s the Basis for a Malpractice Lawsuit?

Professionals have certain duties toward their clients. These duties are based on the standard of care owed to clients by other professionals in the same profession. For example, a doctor’s duty is that of a reasonable, prudent doctor in good standing in the medical profession.

When a doctor, a lawyer, or an accountant fails to measure up to the standard of care expected of him, he breaches his professional duties. If this action causes harm to a client or patent, a lawsuit may be brought to recover for the injuries.

Who Can Be Sued for Malpractice?

In addition to lawyers and members of the medical field, the following professionals and businesses often face litigation:

  • Members of the clergy
  • Brokers of real estate
  • Accountants
  • Architects
  • Hospitals

In general, malpractice lawsuits can be divided in three main categories:

What Can Serve as the Basis for a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?

Injuries that may be subject to medical malpractice include the following:

  • Misdiagnosing or failing to diagnose a serious health condition
  • Medication errors (such as a wrong dosage)
  • Birth-related injuries
  • Abuse in nursing facilities or rehab centers
  • Neglect by a health care professional
  • Defective prescription drugs or medical products (these defects may also lead to strict liability)
  • Surgery-related injuries
  • Unnecessary surgery
  • Not following up with a patient or discharging a patient too early

What Can Serve as the Basis for a Legal Malpractice Lawsuit?

A lawyer’s conduct can fall below the adequate professional conduct in many ways, such as the following:

  • Failing to consider appropriate statutes, including the statue of limitations
  • Failing to appropriately conduct discovery
  • Failing to answer a client’s telephone calls or emails
  • Failing to appropriately inform a client
  • Abandoning a client
  • Mixing a client’s money in a trust accounts with the lawyer’s personal funds
  • Litigating excessively at the expense of the client
  • Lying, deceiving, or acting with ulterior motives

Seeking Legal Help

If you have suffered harm from the actions of a professional, you should consult with a qualified malpractice lawyer. Malpractice lawyers often specialize in certain areas of malpractice, for instance:

Photo of page author Pavel Leshchinskiy

, LegalMatch Legal Content Developer

Last Modified: 07-28-2015 07:40 PM PDT

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