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  • $30.1 Million NYC - Medical Malpractice Case
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Certificate of Merit in a Medical Malpractice Case

In order to start a medical malpractice lawsuit in New York, the plaintiff's attorney has to submit a certificate of merit to the court. In New York, the law requires that when you want to start a medical malpractice case, you must acquire confirmation from a medical expert, who has treated you or reviewed all your medical records. The medical expert must confirm that:

· There was wrongdoing

· The wrongdoing caused the injury

· The injury is significant and/or permanent

Once you have obtained this confirmation from a medical expert, you can then certify to the court that you have spoken to a medical expert who is qualified to review and evaluate your medical records. After that, your attorney will sign the particular document and submit it along with the documents needed to start your medical malpractice lawsuit.

This confirmation from a medical expert is the certificate of merit, which is very much required for starting any type of medical malpractice case in New York. If you do not have the certificate or merit, you will have many problems in starting your lawsuit, and your case might ultimately be dismissed.

Why is a Certificate of Merit Required to Start a Medical Malpractice Case in New York?

Medicine is an elaborate science, and in a medical malpractice claim, the standard of care involved is much higher compared to any other type of claim. Therefore, such claim can be filed only when it is accompanied by certificate of merit. This document will certify that:

· The plaintiff's attorney has reviewed all the facts about the case

· A medical expert has been consulted, who has reviewed the case, and confirmed that there was wrongdoing, the wrongdoing caused the injury, and the injury was significant

· The lawyer and medical expert both conclude that the claim of the plaintiff has merits

The certificate of merit helps to eliminate frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits, which could take up a lot of the court's time and resources. The certificate will also help in verifying whether the plaintiff is falsifying any claim about the doctor or hospital, which provided the treatment. A certificate of merit will also enable the attorneys to obtain a better sense of the case, since the case has been reviewed by an objective medical expert.

Contents of the Certificate of Merit

Essentially the certificate of merit should cover the fact that the expert executing the certificate is reasonably certain that the doctor or hospital had violated acceptable standards of medical care. This alleges that since the doctor or hospital had violated their duty of care, they were negligent.

The certificate of merit requires:

· The signature of the medical expert.

· The medical expert should be qualified in the same field as the defendant doctor.

· The medical expert should have reviewed the case fully before expressing his or her opinion.

· The opinion of the medical expert should be similar to opinions expressed by similar experts of that field, while considering a similar situation. Anything dramatically different will raise suspicion and will have to be rightfully explained.

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