Articles Tagged with injury lawyers

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Corporate America continues to use mandatory arbitration agreements to strip consumers of their right to make civil claims in court. medicalrecords-200x300

“Voluntary” and forced arbitration agreements are quickly becoming the norm as businesses seek to shield themselves from liability. Kiplinger Finance recently examined the trend of forced arbitration agreements in credit card and other financial contracts. In many cases, consumers are given the option of opting out of arbitration. It’s critical to read the fine print of your contracts and follow up by opting out of such agreements whenever possible.

While most civil claims, including personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits, are decided in court, arbitration agreements force both sides to agree to settle their differences through an arbitrator of facts, outside the court of law. Frequently, these arbitrators survive on corporate business.

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Lee Memorial Health System is the No. 1 employer in Lee County, with 9,500 workers in four different hospitals. Most of the injury lawsuits it faces are going to be:

  • Workers’ compensation claims;
  • Medical malpractice injuries. ward

There are differing proof burdens for each, and the level of evidence needed in medical malpractice cases is especially high.

However, there is a third type of claim that could arise, and it’s important to make the distinction: General negligence. That is, if the person injured wasn’t a worker or a patient and the injury didn’t stem from some violated provision of health care, it’s likely a general negligence claim. The reason it’s necessary to classify this upfront is that medical malpractice claims almost always require expert witness testimony and there are certain time limits and lawsuit notification deadlines that have to be met.

Sometimes, health care systems will argue that a claim filed as general negligence is in fact medical malpractice because they want plaintiffs to face additional hurdles. That gives defendant hospitals and health care workers more of an opportunity to prevail in their case. Continue reading →