Medical Malpractice FAQ

Read Common Questions About Medical Malpractice in South Carolina

If a procedure was not successful, is that medical malpractice?

Not necessarily. Health care practitioners are not guarantors of their services; however, they are required to exercise the skill and care that others in the community use when performing the same procedure.

How long do I have to file a lawsuit?

South Carolina law protects defendants with specific “statutes of limitations.” These strict laws require that a lawsuit must be filed within a certain time period after the event takes place. Generally a medical malpractice claim must be filed within three years after the person knew or should have known that he or she had a cause of action. If a lawsuit has not been properly commenced within the required time set forth in the law, you will have lost your rights to make a claim for compensation for your injuries.

What is “informed consent”?

Unless the situation is an emergency that warrants immediate treatment, a doctor has a duty to thoroughly explain all procedures that are performed on a patient. The doctor must discuss (1) the diagnosis, (2) the general nature of the contemplated procedure, (3) the risks involved in the procedure, (4) the probability of success associated with the procedure, (5) the prognosis if the procedure is not carried out, and (6) the existence of any alternatives to the procedure.

What should I do if I think I may have a medical malpractice claim?

An experienced medical malpractice attorney can be helpful in assessing your claim, investigating the facts, and establishing which parties might be responsible. If possible, obtain your medical records and bring them to your first meeting with the attorney.

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