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Do I sue my doctor or the hospital for medical malpractice?

February 6, 2017

Hospital stays aren’t necessarily going to be comfortable or easy. They should, however, leave you feeling a bit better than when you went in for treatment. But when you end up injured as the result of a medical practitioner’s negligence, who would you bring a medical malpractice lawsuit against—the hospital where you were treated, or the doctor that treated you? The medical malpractice attorneys at Indiana law firm Wilson Kehoe Winingham will be able to help you with your particular case, but here are some common scenarios when determining who is liable.

When Do I Sue the Doctor?

Most doctors are not technically employees of the hospital where they work. It’s more common for a doctor to be an independent contractor. Because independent contractors aren’t the same thing as employees, any legal actions need to be brought against them directly rather than against their place of work.

In cases where the doctor is supervising a hospital employee that committed medical malpractice, a victim could sue the doctor instead of the hospital—depending on how much control the physician had over the situation.

When Do I Sue the Hospital?

Victims can sue a hospital if the negligent party was an employee of the hospital. The negligence of nurses, medical technicians, ambulance drivers, and other support staff can be grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital. Keep in mind that the employees must be doing something related to their job at the time of the alleged negligence.

While a person can’t usually sue a hospital for a doctor’s treatment, there are exceptions. If the doctor is a hospital employee—meaning that the hospital controls his or her hours, vacation time, or sets the costs for treatment, a victim could sue the hospital. A hospital will also be liable for the actions of an incompetent doctor that they knowingly keep on staff and allow to harm patients. 

Can WKW Help Me with My Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?

If you’re considering suing a doctor or hospital and you’re in the Indianapolis area, the medical malpractice attorneys and nurse consultants at WKW can help with your case. The treatment you receive at a hospital can change your life forever and even be the difference between life and death. You deserve compensation for your pain and suffering. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call 317.920.6400 or fill out our online contact form.

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