Sometimes “when it rains in pours.” You suffer injuries in an auto collision and go to see a doctor to make it better; but unfortunately, after seeing the doctor, you come out worse because the doctor is negligent in some way and makes an already bad situation worse. So instead of being treated and released, you stay overnight in the hospital, need surgery for the complications, and medical expenses in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. You thought your sore neck and back would be fine in six weeks, but you now learn you will have permanent injuries.
In “legal speak” this is referred to as the common law pertaining to “third-party intervening negligence.” In South Carolina, the person who caused the wreck is liable for not only the original injuries caused in the auto collision, but also, the injuries caused by the doctor’s “third-party” negligence. The reasoning is that since the party started the chain of events through negligence, he or she is liable for all damages naturally flowing from the original negligence.
You may still maintain a claim for malpractice against the negligent health care provider to recover the full extent of damages, because in some instances, the party who was originally negligent and caused the chain of events to unfold, does not have sufficient insurance or resources to make you whole.
The only requirement is that you must be reasonable in choosing a healthcare provider. If you go to a hospital emergency room, or other license physician that has the training to treat you condition, that is reasonable. It is an easy threshold to prove, as there are not many instances in which you would get treated by anyone other than a licensed professional.
If you have suffered injuries that are not your fault, please give us a call. We are glad to assist.