Australian Doctor - Medical Negligence Compensation Claims





Our solicitors specialise in medical negligence compensation claims against negligent doctors. If you have been injured as a result of negligent medical treatment, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible. Time limits apply to compensation claims, and it is important that you seek legal advice as soon as you become aware that you may have been injured or suffered some other harm or loss as a result of a doctor’s actions or omissions. Compensation may also be available to family members who have lost a loved one as a result of medical negligence.

For obligation-free legal advice and No Win No Fee representation, call our helpline, complete the contact form or send an email.


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Duty of Care


Doctors have a duty to exercise reasonable care, skill and judgement in examining, diagnosing, treating and providing information to their patients. A breach in duty of care may result in damages being awarded to the patient. Despite the fact that the execution of a consent form specifies acknowledgment of the stated risks and complications in conjunction with a given treatment or operation, it doesn’t relieve a doctor from their responsibility of meeting the standard of care in association with such treatment or operations.

Our medical negligence lawyers have handled hundreds of compensation cases against doctors and hospitals. They can provide accurate advice on whether you should take legal action against a doctor such as a :

  • General Practitioner
  • Anaesthetist
  • Cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon
  • Dermatologist
  • Emergency Medicine Physician
  • Gastroenterologist
  • Family Physician
  • General Surgeon
  • Gynaecologist
  • Internal Medicine Physician
  • Neurologist
  • Neurosurgeon
  • Obstetrician
  • Oncologist
  • Ophthalmologist
  • Ophthalmic Surgeon
  • Oral Surgeon
  • Orthopaedic Surgeon
  • Pathologist
  • Paediatrician
  • Plastic Surgeon
  • Psychiatrist
  • Radiologist
  • Urologist


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Causation


For a patient to succeed with a medical negligence claim it is not enough to show that there was a breach in duty of care, or that the results of the treatment were poor. They must be able to prove, on the balance of probabilities, that the doctor’s poor performance caused the unsatisfactory result. This is known as “causation”, and proving this link between the actions of the doctor and the harm a patient experiences can be one of the most difficult areas of a medical negligence claim. If a patient can prove “breach in duty of care” and “causation of damage”, the final hurdle is to assess the value of the claim or damages award.


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Damages Award


Compensation is usually awarded as a lump sum, once-and-for-all payment intended to cover past, present and future expenses. The lump sum award is calculated based on loss and harm suffered and needs arising, as a result of the negligence.

A patient may be awarded compensation for :

  • Loss of income
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Medical expenses
  • Allied health care expenses
  • Equipment aides
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Attendant care
  • Domestic assistance
  • Pain and suffering

Because of the complexities involved in bringing a medical negligence case, you should seek the assistance of an experienced medical negligence lawyer who will provide a thorough assessment of liability, causation, and quantum (the value of the claim).


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Medical Negligence Case Examples


Our accredited Personal Injury Specialists (medical negligence law), have extensive knowledge and experience in handling claims involving :

  • Errors in diagnosis
  • Improper procedure performance
  • Failure to supervise or monitor
  • Medication errors
  • Failure or delay in referral or consultation
  • Equipment malfunction
  • Lack of informed consent
  • Failure to perform
  • Delay in performance of a procedure
  • Failure to recognise a complication of treatment
  • Failure to instruct or communicate with the patient
  • Premature discharge of a patient
  • Unnecessary treatment
  • Sexual misconduct


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Misdiagnosed Conditions


One of the biggest areas of medical negligence is the misdiagnosis of medical conditions. Some of the most commonly misdiagnosed medical conditions are :

  • Heart Attack / Myocardial Infarction
  • Coronary Artherosclerosis
  • Aortic Aneurysm
  • Breast Cancer
  • Lung Cancer
  • Colon Cancer
  • Cancer of the Rectum
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Appendicitis
  • Pneumonia
  • Meningitis
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Diabetes
  • Bone Fracture
  • Back Disorders
  • Endocarditis


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Death Claims


Relatives of a person who has died as a result of medical negligence may be able to make a claim for “Compensation to Relatives” for their loss of a reasonable expectation of future pecuniary benefits. Compensation may also be available for mental or nervous shock; a psychiatric illness such as major depression, anxiety disorder or adjustment disorder sustained by the deceased’s family.

Where a patient has died as a result of medical negligence, we may recommend that a report be made to the Coroner's Court. Sometimes a report should also be made to the appropriate regulatory body such as the :

  • Health Care Complaints Commission of New South Wales
  • Health Services Commissioner of Victoria
  • Health Quality and Complaints Commission, Queensland
  • Health and Community Services Complaints Commissioner, South Australia
  • The ACT Health Services Commissioner
  • The Health and Community Services Complaints Commission, Northern Territory
  • Health Complaints Commissioner, Tasmania
  • Office of Health Review, Western Australia
  • Medical Board of Australia


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


Statute of Limitations


With any personal injury claim, the plaintiff has a limited time after the occurrence of the alleged negligence in which to commence legal proceedings. Many States follow the "discovery rule" for medical negligence claims. Under the discovery rule, the statute of limitation begins to run from the time the plaintiff knew or should have known of the alleged negligence, with the time limit being 3 years in many jurisdictions. Special rules may also apply to children claiming medical negligence.

It is important that you seek legal advice as soon as possible to avoid losing your right to sue, as failing to bring legal action within the legal time limit, may mean your claim becomes “statute-barred”.

Call our legal team today to find out what time limit applies to your case.


SOLICITORS HELPLINE 1800 339 353


No Win No Fee Solicitor


Our legal team will assess whether your case appears to have merit, and if so, they will recommend that an investigation be conducted. An investigation of a medical negligence case usually involves the taking of a statement from the patient, review of medical and hospital records, and commissioning an independent report from a medical expert. You may have to contribute to the cost of disbursements (obtaining copies of your medical records and a medico-legal report), however you will not be asked to pay your solicitor’s professional fees. Your solicitor will not be paid their professional fees unless they are successful in obtaining compensation for you.

If you would like further information on how a No Win No Fee agreement operates, please contact our legal team today.