Darwin Medical Negligence Solicitors - NT Lawyers Northern Territory
Doctors usually provide a high standard of excellence for their patients however there are occasions when things go wrong. We can get you the best representation available anywhere in the country and our lawyers deal with claims on a no win no fee basis which means they don�t get paid unless they succeed. If you would like free telephone advice from Darwin medical negligence solicitors just call us
There are time limits within which Darwin medical negligence solicitors must either settle claims or arrange for legal proceedings to be issued in a Northern Territory court of law. These time limits are outlined in The Limitation Act 1981 and subsequent amendements.
The time available in NT to bring an action is limited in order to ensure that cases are tried while evidence is fresh in witnesses minds, to give certainty to the ongoing carriage of personal and business affairs and to ensure that plaintiffs do not delay unnecessarily in the bringing of an action.
The limitation legislation in Northern Territory is complex and difficult with numerous exceptions and exemptions and varying time limits dependent on the type of injury, the age and mental capacity of the claimant, the date that the injury was or should have been discovered and the behaviour of the potential defendent. Failure to comply with NT time limits can result in loss of the opportunity for a Darwin Medical Negligence Solicitor to claim compensation.
Reference should always be made to an NT medical negligence solicitor to obtain information and advice on Northern Territory time limits as soon as possible after the event giving rise to the potential claim. If you would like specialist advise at no cost just complete the contact form or use the helpline and a no win no fee solicitor will telephone you with no charge and no obligation.
Our medical negligence solicitors have offices situated in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Darwin, and Sydney. Do yourself justice - give us a call.
What is medical negligence?
To succeed in a damages claim it is necessary for a Darwin medical negligence solicitor to show that it is more likely than not that their client has suffered injury which they would not otherwise have suffered but for negligent treatment. Treatment is negligent if a healthcare provider has fallen below the minimum standard of skill or care that the medical profession regards as reasonable in that area of the country. It is also necessary to prove through expert testimony that the negligence of the health care provider was a cause of injury or death. The mere fact that the outcome of treatment was unsuccessful does not necessarily mean that the treatment was inappropriate. Medical negligence information is often not forthcoming from a healthcare provider however they are obliged to disclose all records and documentation appurtenant to the matter which may go some way to prove negligence.
What does informed consent mean?
A doctor is required to advise the patient of any procedure that is to be performed together with full information regarding all of the possible consequences and alternatives. If the consequences of not being properly informed are detrimental to the patient it may be possible to prove that the physician was negligent. There are certain emergency situations where the requirement to obtain the patients 'informed consent' is waived.
Can I obtain my medical records?
It is a requirement that potential medical negligence information is released to a claimant following a request for disclosure of medical records held by a potential defendent. Patients do have a legal right to obtain copies of their own medical records. The records may be held in more than one location and it is necessary to make a written request. There may be a copying charge applied before the records are released.
What does standard of care mean?
State law determines the definition of negligence however the 'standard of care' that a physician must achieve is defined by the actions of the medical community at large. The relevant question to define negligence is whether on the available information any reasonable physician would have performed the same acts.
What is contributory negligence?
Contributory negligence occurs when an injured person has failed to exercise care for their own safety which contributed to the injury. Failing to take medical advice or failure to attend examinations or refusal to take recommended medication may in certain circumstances be said to contribute to the final outcome of the patient�s health. Damages payable can be substantially reduced if the patient is guilty of contributory negligence.
Darwin No Win No Fee Solicitors
Most NT legal cases in which victims are attempting to claim damages for personal injury are now handled by Darwin medical negligence solicitors using a 'conditional fee agreement' (CFA) otherwise known as a no win no fee compensation claim. Our Darwin medical negligence solicitors operate the no win no fee scheme otherwise known as a conditional fee agreement. No legal charge is payable unless the legal case is won and the client obtains an award of compensation. In the event that the legal claim is lost there is no charge made to the client. A CFA is entered into by the client and the solicitor whereby the solicitor is only allowed to charge a legal fee if the claim is successful and the client is awarded compensation.
If a no win no fee compensation claim is lost and the client does not receive an award of damages then the solicitor will not be paid and must write off legal costs. The medical NT negligence solicitor will only receive payment if the court rules in the clients favour and the solicitor will therefore pay great attention to initial information supplied by the client in an attempt to establish whether or not the claim has a reasonable chance of success sufficient for the solicitor to consider investing his time and money.
For a Darwin medical negligence solicitor to take on a no win no fee compensation claim it does not have to be watertight. Most solicitors will take on a case using a CFA if it has a reasonable or better than evens chance of success. Some solicitors however are not willing to take any risk and will reject all but the most secure potential cases. Most solicitors will carry out a basic risk assessment before entering into a CFA and for more complicated cases they will make detailed studies and assessments and often ask other lawyers for their opinions on liability and quantum before they decide whether to accept the case or not. It must be remembered that the entire financial risk of a case using a no win no fee arrangement falls on the conducting lawyer.
Not all no win no fee compensation claim agreements are the same. A CFA must only follow a basic format. Some lawyers and claims companies will ask you to fund disbursements and expenses as the claim continues. Some will even ask you to take out a personal loan to cover that cost and also to finance buying an insurance policy which in most cases is unnecessary. In extreme cases you may also find that an agreement requires payment of a percentage of the amount of the final award of compensation.
HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 633 634
The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here