After a bike accident I went to the ER for an injured right pinkie. They x-rayed it, saw the "fracture" and gave me a little splint and said 4 weeks to heal. Charges are $1,000! Now, the hand specialist says it needed a pin or at least a much better cast. It is inoperable and my right hand is permanently injured and in pain and my only hope of regaining motion is physical therapy. I don't want to pay the ER bill and I'd like them to pay for the therapy. It's not the kind of case the big medical malpractice lawyers want, but I feel the hospital owes me something.
You have a much bigger problem in that your case appears to involve mis-treatment in an emergency room and in Texas, thanks to tort reform, emergency rooms and their staff are protected from civil lawsuits unless they are guilty of gross negligence, which requires a finding of actual malice against you, or an intentional or wanton disregard for your safety. The standard is not mere negligence in an emergency room, ordinary negligence is now acceptable in Texas emergency rooms. I agree with the other attorneys who have commented here as to the foolishness of filing your own medical malpractice lawsuit, but if you were not admitted to the hospital, and only treated in the ER, then you really have no chance of winning, even with a lawyer. I'm sorry, but that is the currently the law in Texas.
That would be an exercise in futility, so still have a local malpractice lawyer order your records to investigate. Avvo has a great lawyer finder tool to locate an attorney close to your home. Good luck.
You could sue but can you win? I don't think so... for many reasons. I'm betting not only the big medical malpractice lawyers rejected your case but any malpractce lawyer would.
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Sorry for your injury but you cannot establish the standard of care without a medical expert in most jurisdictions. And if you are unwilling to pay the $1000 bill, you will likely be unwilling to pay a doctor $10,000 to come sit in small claims court with you for the day.
Medical negligence lawsuits are serious matters best left to the legal professionals. So you should probably just pay your bill, seek the PT you need to get better, and put this situation behind you.
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As a medical malpractice attorney in TX, it is my strong advice that you do not attempt to file on your own in small claims. The Texas med mal tort reform laws will still govern. The laws require the plaintiff to file an expert report within 120 days of filing suit. It takes years of expertise to know how to create a "sufficient" report under the law and the countless appellate rulings on the subject. A real doctor has no idea how to do a report without a lawyer's guidance. Here is the kicker: failing to file the report on time renders your case dismissed and the defense has a right to get their entire defense costs sanctioned against you. You could end up broke.
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