Up until a few months ago, members of the military were not permitted to file medical malpractice claims against negligent doctors, surgeons, and other healthcare professionals whose carelessness resulted in serious injuries. Although service members are still prohibited from filing lawsuits in federal court, they now have the right to seek compensation for injuries related to medical malpractice. Unfortunately, the process of filing a claim remains complicated, as the parties are required to pursue compensation through a government review process, so if you or a loved one recently sustained an injury as a result of a military healthcare professional’s negligence, please contact an experienced lawyers who can advise you throughout the filing process.
Can I File a Medical Malpractice Claim in Federal Court?
As a result of a recent amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act made late last year, troops can now seek compensation for medical malpractice-related losses. Although still prohibited from filing a claim in federal court, service members now have the option of going through an administrative review process. This involves submitting a claim for personal injury or wrongful death due to the negligence of a DOD healthcare provider, directly with the agency, which is creating a subdivision that will deal exclusively with medical malpractice claims.
The upside of this limitation is that plaintiffs will not be required to wait for years to obtain a hearing or set a court date, which is often the case for plaintiffs who file federal claims. Furthermore, claimants would still retain the right to appeal any decision issued by the DOD.
What Types of Compensation Can I Recover?
An estimated $400 million is scheduled to be set aside by the DOD over the next ten years for the investigation, resolution, and settlement of military medical malpractice claims made after January 2017. Soldiers whose claims are approved by the DOD will be eligible to receive uncapped monetary compensation for:
- Related medical expenses;
- Lost wages;
- Loss of future income;
- Permanent disability;
- Emotional distress;
- Pain and suffering; and
- Wrongful death.
It is important to note, however, that service members will only be eligible for these damages if they file a claim before the statute of limitations expires, which is two years from the date of the procedure (or three years for those who file in 2020).
Schedule a Free Consultation Today
Those who serve in the military put their lives on the line every day and should be compensated for their losses. To speak with an experienced Brandon military medical malpractice lawyer about filing a claim against the negligent DOD healthcare professional who caused your own injury, please call Palmer | Lopez at 813-506-5651. Our dedicated team is well-versed in the legal obstacles facing service members and are dedicated to helping our clients obtain the compensation they deserve. Initial consultations are offered free of charge, so please don’t hesitate to call or contact us online at your earliest convenience. We are standing by to begin addressing your questions and concerns.