$I Billion for Injured New Yorkers
Our Results
  • $30.1 Million NYC - Medical Malpractice Case
  • $15 Million Manhattan - Medical Malpractice Case
  • $3 Million Queens - Wrongful Death Case
  • $5.5 Million Bronx - Birth Injury Accident
  • $30.1 Million NYC - Medical Malpractice Case
  • $15 Million Manhattan - Medical Malpractice Case
  • $3 Million Queens - Wrongful Death Case
  • $5.5 Million Bronx - Birth Injury Accident
  • $7.75 Million NYC - Medical Malpractice Case
Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff, LLP
Experienced & Trusted Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Call today for a Free Consultation
1-866-516-5887
Serving the greater NYC Area: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx & Staten Island
Attorneys

Res Ipsa Loquitor in a Medical Malpractice Case

In order to file a medical malpractice case in the state of New York, you are required to bring in a medical expert to support your claim. The claim should show that there was wrongdoing, the injuries were caused by the wrongdoing, and the injuries are significant and/or permanent. However, in certain instances expert testimony is not required.

Res Ipsa Loquitor

For instance, you go in for a surgery to fix a problem in your left hand, and when you come out of surgery you notice a bandage on your right shoulder, and the nurse says you have suffered a third degree burn. In such an instance, can you use Res Ipsa Loquitor, which is a Latin phrase meaning, the thing speaks for itself? If so, do you need a medical expert to support your claim? The answer is that in such a case, you can use Res Ipsa Loquitor and you do not need a medical expert to support your claim.

Three Elements Needed to Apply Res Ipsa Loquitor

However, before concluding that a medical expert is not needed to testify, you need to consider three important things. Hence Res Ipsa Loquitor will apply only when:

1. This type of injury would not happen but for someone's negligence

2. The patient has not caused or contributed to his or her own injury

3. The patient was in total and exclusive control of the hospital staff or doctor

Only when all these three conditions are met, then only you can use Res Ipsa Loquitor as part of the claim, and there is no need to bring in a medical expert to testify.

Let us consider your case. You were under anesthesia, when you received the burn on your right shoulder. Hence, you could not have possibly caused or contribute towards the injury. Additionally, since you were under anesthesia you were under the exclusive control of the hospital staff and the doctor in the operating room. However, could your injury be caused only because of someone's negligence? In this case, it turns out this is not so.

During the surgery, a quartering instrument is used for burning close, bleeding blood vessels. When the hospital was using this instrument, they inadvertently touched a covering that was shrouding the patient, and this caught fire. The fire was not seen until it was too late and the patient was burnt on the right shoulder. Hence, clearly negligence of the hospital staff caused the burn and there was no other way this injury could have been caused. Therefore, you do not need a medical expert to testify, to prove this case.

However, even when the three elements are met and you can use Res Ipsa Loquitor, it is best to provide expert testimony. The expert will be able to explain the surgery to the jury, and why such an injury never should have occurred. By bringing in the expert, you gain tremendous credibility with the jury. Hence, even if you are not required to have a medical expert on your side, it makes sense to present an expert testimony on your case's behalf.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Learn About Medical Malpractice Cases in NYC

Watch all videos »

Listen to our clients

Watch all videos »

Case of the month

$7,750,000 Recovery Due to Negligent Care in NYC Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

Our client, a 5 year-old patient receives almost $8 million in compensation from an NYC hospital in a medical malpractice claim won by Rosenberg, Minc,Falkoff & Wolf. Daniel Minc, representing the injured child with his team of legal and medical experts said "it was great day for the family".

The case involved negligent care on the part of the hospital pediatric intensive care unit for failing to observe bleeding from a simple biopsy wound which caused Neurological damage.

Medical Malpractice Blog

$25 million verdict against New York Methodist Hospital
When a child is born, parents expect the doctor, nurses and other staff to provide care that is up to the...
Read This Malpractice Post

Experienced & Trusted medical malpractice lawyers

  • Top Lawyers 2016
  • Litigator Awards
  • Verdicts and Settlement Hall of Fame
  • BBB Accredited Business | A+
  • Avvo Rating 10.0 Superb | Top Attorney Medical Malpractice
  • Rated By Super Lawyers | Daniel C. Minc | 5 years
Call 1-866-516-5887 or email us to set up your free, confidential consultation. Our experience can make a difference for you.

Office Locations - Call today to schedule a consultation 1-866-516-5887

16 Court Street
Brooklyn, NY 11241

Brooklyn Law Office

3101 Broadway
Astoria, NY 11106

Astoria Law Office

8900 Sutphin Blvd
Suite 501
Queens, NY 11435

Queens Law Office

9201 4th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11209

Brooklyn Law Office

Firm News

Robert H. Wolff Named President
Firm Attorney, Robert H. Wolff is now the president of the New York City Bronx County Bar Association
About This Attorney

Back to Top