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Mediation and Your Malpractice Claim: What to Expect

Written by Berkowitz

an open book laid out with glasses, a paper, a pen, and the word mediationMedical malpractice claims can easily be resolved through mediation, but only if all parties are willing to work toward a solution. Most physicians and hospitals are reluctant to go to the table to negotiate, but it could prove beneficial to do so. Mediation has always been cited as a way to lower the cost of litigation, and to ensure that injured patients still receive compensation for their injuries. Unfortunately, few doctors are participating in mediation when they have claims filed against them.

A study from the WSJ law journal found that in 31 cases that did go to mediation, 16 were settled, five settled after, and 10 were not settled. While defense attorneys are much less likely to agree than plaintiff’s attorneys, lawyers who participated in these mediations did state that they were satisfied with the process and the results.

Why Mediation is Beneficial for Everyone

Patients will resort to suing physicians simply to find out why their care went wrong. They want answers because they feel betrayed by the medical professional who they put their trust into. After an injury, you may suffer from additional medical costs, have additional pain and suffering, or you may be permanently disabled. Mediation offers patients the advantage of getting to know all parties that were involved, and also learning about why this happened to them. They get answers to their questions, and can come to a reasonable agreement with the physician or hospital – something that they cannot get at trial.

Faster Compensation

Another great benefit to using mediation in your medical malpractice claim is the speed in which you will receive compensation. If your case goes to trial, you will have to endure the trial process (which could take weeks or months), and then wait for judgment. With mediation, the defendant will agree to a settlement and the papers are drafted immediately – not weeks or months in between.

This is extremely important for patients who are suffering financially. It means that you have access to funds for future medical costs, lost wages, and emotional damages – so that you can get on with your life. Also, when there is a trial, there is no certainty that an injured patient will receive compensation at all – and it could take years before he or she sees compensation.

Getting the Most Out of Your Mediation

If your medical malpractice attorney has suggested mediation for your claim, it is important to get the most out of the experience. You can do so by:

  1. Ensuring that you are willing to communicate and resolve the case. Even though you are injured and confused, you need to be willing to communicate, discuss options, and negotiate.
  2. Not making any aggressive statements.
  3. Not including parties that are unnecessary to the mediation itself.
  4. Having your medical malpractice attorney present to help with the negotiation process, and ensure that you are compensated fully.
  5. Starting the mediation process early, so that the costs associated with your case do not have time to multiply.
  6. Setting aside ample time for your mediation session, and being prepared to come back for second, third, or fourth appointments until everything can be resolved.
  7. Preparing for mediation by going over the details with your attorney.
  8. Never revealing your bottom line to the mediator.

Speak with a Connecticut Malpractice Attorney Today Regarding Your Claim

If you have been injured due to your physician’s negligence, contact the medical malpractice team at Berkowitz and Hanna LLC. We have used mediation as a way to resolve malpractice claims, and we can help negotiate a great settlement to help you receive your funds sooner. Explore your options soon by seeking legal representation. Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC today to schedule a no-obligation case evaluation. Contact us online to get started.