On-the-job injuries are a frequent hazard, particularly for those who engage in any type of manual labor. Even a minor wound or sprain can send a worker to the hospital. You expect to be treated with the utmost care so that you can recover your health and get back to work. A worker loses wages every day he or she is forced to miss work to recover from an injury. This is why when a trusted medical professional does not meet that expected level of care, the results can be devastating. Sadly, a worker in Elmhurst Illinois did not receive the care he needed from those treating him after a recent on-the-job injury.
It was late summer of 2011 when Edward Smolinski slipped off his work truck and injured the tendon on his left leg by rupturing it. Smolinski was treated and his injuries should have healed in an easy, normal fashion. While he would have likely been able to utilize workers’ compensation to pay his medical bills and lost wages for time off work, his recovery did not go as anticipated.
Instead Smolinski experienced his leg swelling oddly, shortness of breath, and other symptoms associated with a deadly blood clotting disorder called pulmonary embolus. For nearly a month, however, his medical team neglected to diagnose him with the blood clotting injury. Regretfully this horrible error led to Smolinski’s death, just 50 days after his surgery. A jury awarded his family nearly $3 million dollars as a result in a medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit.
Medical Malpractice Law in Illinois
Medical malpractice, or med mal as it is called in the legal industry, is defined by the state of Illinois as damages inflicted upon a patient by any health care professional who has a standard of care toward the patient (this includes doctors, nurses, etc).
Illinois has restrictions on who can file a medical malpractice claim (the victim or the victim’s close loved ones). The state also imposes something called a statute of limitations, which is the time limit a plaintiff has to file the complaint or lose the right to bring suit. In Illinois, the statute of limitations is two years for medical malpractice injuries from when the plaintiff, or loved ones, knew or should have known about the injury. Some exceptions apply to this rule, as in all things.
Illinois does not impose a cap on the monetary awards courts may award to plaintiffs. This means that there is no limit to how much money courts may decide that unfortunate souls like the Smolinski family can receive. Damages refer to the monetary value a court assigns to a plaintiff’s injuries. They are also a means by which courts will punish negligent parties.
Have You Been Injured by a Health Care Provider?
If you or a loved have been injured as a result of medical malpractice, please contact our firm as soon as possible. We have legal professionals standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to help you. Our legal team can live chat with you any hour of the day or please feel free to call our law firm and speak to one of our representatives.
Contacting us can make all the difference when faced with loss of wages and quality of life. Do not suffer alone. There are legal professionals here who can help you get back on your feet and get the monetary damages to which you are entitled. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.
(image courtesy of Charles Deluvio)