Florida Legal Malpractice Law Blog

A chiropractor's role in keeping patients healthy

When pain is severe enough to seek the help of a chiropractor, the situation can be a serious one. The chiropractic profession has long been known as an alternative medicine that aims to ease disorders of the musculoskeletal system, and has proven successful for patients across the globe. Those in Florida who have turned to this form of health care can choose various types of treatment, depending on the ailment. 

Fortunately, most Floridians who receive chiropractic treatment come away with satisfied results. There are some, however, who have negative experiences and even more painful conditions after seeing a chiropractor. In these cases, legal action may be a necessary step.

Common red flags of therapist malpractice

Choosing to see a therapist is a major step for many patients; that is why an honest and trustworthy professional is a must. For most, this brave and proactive choice is only the beginning of improved mental health and overall better quality of life, but what if a therapist proves to have the opposite effect? Patients in Florida have the right to take legal action if they suspect a therapist has made an ethical misstep in their practice.

Independent mental health network Psych Central is no stranger to this problem. According to one piece on negative experiences with therapists, it is not uncommon for a patient to have a therapist that is simply not the right match. Yet on a more serious note, ethical problems can ensue when a therapist chooses to engage sexually with a patient, extorts money, breaches confidentiality or carries out any other illegal activity within sessions. Any of these forms of malpractice can be incredibly damaging to the patient, who is likely dealing with another preexisting issue. Patients who experience trauma as a result of therapist malpractice may decide to first file a complaint on either the state or organizational level, and take further action if necessary.

When a vet makes a mistake

Most pet owners in Florida could agree that only the utmost quality care is suitable for their pets. This is why selecting the most trustworthy veterinarian is crucial. With all of the joys and comfort that a four-legged friend can bring to one's life, why not treat them with special care? Similar to human medical professionals, veterinarians must closely follow safety practices, as well as provide honest and appropriate care in the case that a mistake happens. 

If such a mistake occurs at the hands of a veterinarian, there are legal steps pet owners can take to seek justice. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals shares some common ways to avoid and address veterinarian malpractice, first stating that contacting the local Better Business Bureau and the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners can inform owners of reputable practices. PETA also advises pet owners to avoid letting their pets stay overnight at these facilities, if possible. In the case that an owner suspects malpractice, a good first step is to put the complaint in writing; the document should then go to Florida's veterinary licensing board in request of a proper investigation and review. Pet owners may also file a small-claims suit against the veterinarian, as well.

Attorney loses license in malpractice case

When residents in Florida seek advice and help from a legal professional, they should be able to trust that the attorney has their best interests in mind. Part of this includes being able to trust that the lawyer would never do something that they knew to be illegal or unethical. While this seems like a basic thing, there are sadly some times when even a legal professional fails to uphold these duties.

One example can be seen in a case involving a lawyer who began a solo practice shortly after receiving his license to practice law in Florida. The attorney focused part of his work on allegedly helping people be allowed to legally grow and use marijuana for medicinal purposes. He began this work in 2014. At least two couples hired the man and paid him for what they believed were legitimate certifications and identification cards that gave them the right to produce and use their own medical pot.

What qualifies as legal malpractice?

You might be very upset with your attorney if you recently lost a case. The legal process is often very long and draining, making an unsatisfactory outcome very hard to take. It’s very common for any client to blame their lawyer when this happens, and many want to seek compensation.

Failing to win is not the same as malpractice, however. The standard for legal malpractice is very high and has some very specific hurdles. You may have a good case, but it takes a lot of expertise in the area of legal malpractice to pursue your claim all the way through to a conclusion more satisfying than your first encounter with the courts.

A client's right to confidentiality

If you have retained an attorney in Florida, you should know that you have the right to privacy much like you would expect when you go to the doctor. In general, the American Bar Association indicates that a lawyer should not provide any details about you, your case or their relationship with you to any other person or entity except in very specific situations.

One of the times when discussions may be had about your or the work being done is when it is deemed essential in order for the attorney to perform the work needed on your behalf. Also, if you provide your approval to your lawyer to communication about you to others, then the lawyer's actions may be appropriate.

After charge dropped, man pursues legal malpractice

Florida residents who seek professional guidance from an lawyer when faced with serious legal issues should be able to trust in the quality of the advice that they receive. When they later discover that what they had been told by their attorney may not have been the most accurate or in their best interests, people need to know that they have the right to seek justice.

One man from the midwest has been struggling with this type of issue for several years now. The case started really in 2008 when the man, who was HIV positive, had sexual relations with another person but did not let the other person know this. Reports indicate that the first man did wear a condom and had also been taking medicine which made his chance of transmitting the virus extremely small.

Insurance company claims legal malpractice

People and companies in New York who must hire lawyers need to know that once in a while, a lawyer will fail to act in the best interests of a client in some manner. People also deserve to know that they have some potential recourse if this happens to them. One insurance company based in Germany had to learn this the hard way and today is seeking compensation for what it claims to be a clear act of legal malpractice that had significant financial repercussions.

Reports indicate that the case began several years ago in relation to a claim made after a motor vehicle accident. A law firm based in Greenwich was hired by the insurer based in Germany. When an initial settlement offer of $10 million was proposed, the insurance company ultimately rejected it. This rejection is said to have been based on input and details provided by the attorney handling the case.

Knowing the ins and outs of medical negligence

Hospitals are, ideally, places of treatment, comfort and even hope. Floridians can rest assured knowing they have many reputable hospitals available across the state; today's advanced technologies in the medical field only add to that comfort. Yet some patients, despite these medical advantages, fall through the cracks. When a hospital does not fulfill its promises of caring and treating patients properly, a myriad of issues can occur. While a patient's wellbeing should be a top priority, there are instances in which that priority must be fought for. 

Just weeks ago, The Miami Herald covered the heartbreaking story of two Florida parents who lost a child due to medical negligence. When their son's pediatrician claimed the 22-month-old had nothing beyond a minor cold and sent him home, his parents trusted this guidance. However, the infant had pneumococcal meningitis -- a common cause of bacterial meningitis -- and died two weeks later. According to the Herald, the parents had taken steps toward filing a potential wrongful death and medical malpractice lawsuit. The child had seen his pediatrician three times in the weeks leading up to his death. 

What online reviews can (and can’t) tell you about a lawyer

When the average person needs legal help, it’s hard to know where to turn. Selecting an attorney to represent you during your most vulnerable time is a major decision. You want to find someone you can trust with the details of your case and knows exactly how to navigate law.

Increasingly, people in need of legal advice are turning to the internet to research potential lawyers. In addition to a firm’s official website, you might browse what their clients really think in candid online reviews. Although they can never guarantee the quality of service ahead of time, reviews can tip you off to some very important factors.

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