How Many Years Should I Expect A Medical Malpractice Case To Take In Washington, DC?

Length Of A Medical Malpractice Case in Washington DC

The length of a medical malpractice case depends on a few different factors; such as the complexity of the injury, how many institutions are involved, and where the injury happened.

Proving A Complicated Injury Is Medical Malpractice In Washington DC

When the injury is really complicated, it requires more experts to attest to the severity of the injuries and the interplay between different fields of medicine. The more complex the injury, the more people involved and the more people involved usually mean the longer it takes.

How Many Institutions Are Involved In A Washington DC Case?

Usually a medical malpractice case is filed only against one institution but it's possible that more than one institution were negligent. For example if the primary care doctor missed a diagnosis and then the hospital later was negligent, more than one institution could possibly be involved in a lawsuit. It's more common to have a lawsuit against both the attending physician, and the hospital where he or she was practicing at the time. That's why it's so important for doctors to follow patient safety rules themselves, and the hospital have checklists and systems in place to prevent negligence.

Jurisdiction: Where Did The Medical Malpractice Happen?

Each state has different laws involving lawsuits, timelines, etc. so it makes a difference where the injury happened. In the DC Area you could find yourself at a hospital in DC, Maryland, or Virginia. Any experienced medical malpractice lawyer should be able to tell you quickly how long a case is likely to take in each jurisdiction. 

What If My Medical Malpractice Case Goes To Trial?

A medical malpractice case in D.C., filed against a hospital in D.C. Superior Court, usually takes approximately 1 1/2 to 2 years to get to trial. There are a lot of reasons why D.C. medical malpractice cases take that long to go to trial.  Sometimes medical malpractice cases require taking 30 or 40 depositions of doctors, specialists, nurses, and expert witnesses and these healthcare workers may be practicing medicine all over the country.  Many times, the trial will last several weeks so the hospital's lawyer or the judge may not have enough time, due to other trial commitments, to hold the trial any sooner. 

And occasionally medical malpractice trials are continued (delayed), if a new judge takes over the case but is not available for the trial date, or a key witness is ill, etc.

Contact Our Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers Today

Its a long process but remember any medical malpractice case we file has already been thoroughly investigated, expert witnesses in various medical specialties have agreed to testify at trial, and much of the case is ready to go, so we can minimize delay whenever possible. Do you have questions about medical malpractice? Call us today for an informational interview at 202-393-3320. You won't have to sign anything or agree to anything in advance - we mostly do these interviews so we can get to know you, and you can get to know us and what we do. 

Watch the videos on this page to discover the truth about case acceptance at Donahoe Kearney and to learn more about serious conditions like cerebral palsy.

Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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