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A “Comparative” negligence defense in medical malpractice cases?

On Behalf of | Sep 21, 2016 | Firm News, Medical Malpractice, Personal Injury |

Previous posts here have discussed the concept of “contributory” and “comparative” negligence as defenses to damages caused by another person’s negligence. To refresh, the idea is that if both parties were negligent, the amount that a plaintiff can recover can be reduced or eliminated altogether, depending on the percentage of fault. While this may seem more likely to occur in cases like motor vehicle accidents or slip and falls cases, Connecticut law makes it clear that such defenses are available to defendants in medical malpractice cases as well.

The main stipulation that case law makes is that such defenses are available to a defendant in a medical malpractice case if the cause of action “sounds in negligence.” This is a fancy way of saying that if there is some other reason for the lawsuit, such as, perhaps, defective medical equipment, comparative negligence may not be a defense. These are tricky questions for most people, and it can be difficult to understand the intricacies of the cases.

When a person is injured because of medical malpractice, one can be sure that the doctors and hospitals will likely bring up complex defenses such as comparative negligence. The person whose life has been altered by the medical negligence in such cases will want to be prepared to respond.

The devastating effects of medical malpractice are difficult to overstate. The pain, suffering, emotional trauma and extra medical expenses can be overwhelming. Deal with a complicated area of the law as well, in order to attempt to gain some recompense for these damages, can be a difficult task. Those who would like more information are invited to view our medical malpractice web page.



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