Medical Malpractice Cases and Settlements
Medical malpractice claims in the state of Oklahoma proceed the same way as personal injury claims do, although there are certain difference such as the statute of limitations. If the medical malpractice claim is directed towards a health care provider, then you have to file the claim within two years after the date of the injury. If the victim is a minor under the age of 12, the parent or guardian will have legal right to file for the medical malpractice claim; and if the victim is a minor but over the age of 12 years old, they have a year after they have turned 18 to file for a medical malpractice lawsuit but are prohibited to file a suit less than two years after the date of the accident.
Just as with many states, there is a cap on the amount of compensation given on a medical malpractice claim. Those who file for medical malpractice claims can be awarded both economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages refer to payments that would cover for tangible expenses (past and future medical expenses, lost income and lost earning ability, and other damages directly caused by the medical malpractice), while non-economic damages are “subjective” and would pay for pain and suffering, mental and emotional trauma, and loss of quality of life. An Oklahoma personal injury lawyer can help you put a dollar amount on non-economic damages, but every case is different. It is important to evaluate the extent of the injuries first before agreeing on a non-economic damages award.
As stated in the Oklahoma Statutes 23-61.2, non economic damages are the only ones that have caps on them. The maximum amount that a plaintiff can receive for non-economic damages in the state of Oklahoma is $350,000. The amount can only exceed the cap only in the event of a wrongful death claim following a medical malpractice with the court having convincing and clear evidence of actions of gross negligence, fraudulent intent, reckless disregard of the rights of others, or intent or malice to cause harm. The cap for non-economic damages does not affect the economic damages.