Medical Malpractice

What Is the Average Medical Malpractice Settlement in New York?

November 27, 2023
What Is the Average Medical Malpractice Settlement in New York?

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Medical errors cause serious harm to patients every year in New York.

Financial compensation can help malpractice victims recover damages from the pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical bills that result. But what is the average medical malpractice settlement amount in NY state, and what factors influence settlement payouts?

According to top medical malpractice lawyers in NYC, settlement amounts can vary drastically based on the specifics of each case.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the intricacies of medical malpractice settlements in New York, shedding light on the conditions that typically determine the average settlement. Armed with this knowledge, you can make informed decisions to seek fair compensation for the harm you've suffered.

How Much Is the Average Medical Malpractice Settlement?

How Much Is the Average Medical Malpractice Settlement?

Understanding the potential compensation in medical malpractice cases can provide clarity and help victims plan for the future. To answer this question, it can help to look at real cases handled by Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Firm, which showcase a range of settlement amounts and influencing factors:

  1. An $8 million settlement for the failure of a neurologist to diagnose a brain tumor that led to permanent disabilities.
  2. A $7.5 million settlement for a pediatrician's failure to diagnose a spinal tumor that left a teenager paralyzed.
  3. A $7.14 million settlement for the delayed performance of a C-section that resulted in severe brain damage to an infant.
  4. A $4.375 million settlement for improper treatment of a urological condition that resulted in penile abscess, erectile dysfunction, and serious infection causing partial paralysis.
  5. A $3.25 million settlement for misdiagnosis of back pain as musculoskeletal rather than related to an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
  6. A $2.3 million settlement for failure to diagnose and report coronary artery disease that resulted in the death of a father.
  7. A $2 million settlement for failure to follow up on abnormal test results that led to a delay in diagnosing gynecological cancer.

Hopefully, these real-life examples can provide insight into what you might expect in your case. Whether you're seeking justice for yourself or a loved one, understanding average settlement amounts can help you navigate the process of filing a medical malpractice claim.

Common Medical Malpractice Claim Allegations

A medical malpractice case can arise from any number of situations where a healthcare professional's negligence results in harm to a patient. Here are some common errors that often lead to lawsuits:

  • Diagnosis: A misdiagnosis or failure to provide a timely and accurate diagnosis.
  • Surgery: Committing surgical errors, such as leaving instruments inside the body or operating on the wrong body part.
  • Treatment: Giving incorrect or improperly administered treatments, such as medications, procedures, or devices.
  • Obstetrics: Failing to adequately address issues during pregnancy or childbirth, resulting in complications for the mother or child.
  • Medication: Providing the wrong medication or an incorrect dosage, even if the prescription was otherwise accurate.
  • Anesthesia: Causing anesthesia-related complications, such as administering incorrect dosages or failing to promptly address complications during anesthesia.
  • Monitoring: Failing to provide necessary supervision or detect and respond to worsening patient conditions promptly.
  • Equipment: Neglecting to correct equipment malfunctions or improper use that results in harm, such as damaging healthy tissues or structures or employing equipment unnecessarily.
  • IV and Blood Products: Giving the wrong type or amount of IV or blood products or administering contaminated products.

These allegations and their consequences highlight the various scenarios in which medical malpractice claims may arise, prompting patients to pursue compensation and justice for their injuries, including instances of wrongful death.

Factors Impacting Payouts for Medical Negligence in New York

Several key factors combine to determine the average payout for medical negligence in New York, including:

  • The severity of the injuries
  • Cumulative medical treatment costs
  • The amount of lost income and earning capacity
  • Provable damages
  • Liability
  • The statute of limitations

The more severe the injuries and the greater the resulting costs, the higher the potential payout. Strong evidence of liability and damages within the statute of limitations period can also increase compensation.

Malpractice victims should consult a medical malpractice attorney to discuss these facets more thoroughly and get a better sense of what the financial award may be in their particular case.

Medical Malpractice Settlement Formula

The general formula used to determine medical malpractice settlement amounts is as follows:

claim value = economic damages (past and future) + non-economic damages (past and future)

The damages referred to here include the victim's medical costs, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, pain and suffering, and loss of companionship or consortium. More subjective factors like the victim's age, the severity of the injury, and the impact on the victim's quality of life are also considered.

The final settlement amount is typically a negotiated compromise between what the victim requests and what the insurance provider offers. Most cases settle out of court based on this multi-factor analysis.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are a central component of compensation in medical malpractice cases. These damages encompass various financial losses incurred by victims or their families, including:

  • Past and future medical and therapeutic expenses, such as surgeries, hospital stays, and ongoing treatments.
  • Past and future lost wages resulting from the victim's inability to work or reduced earning capacity due to the injury.
  • Expenses related to adaptive devices like prosthetic limbs, wheelchairs, and necessary medical equipment for those with severe injuries.
  • The cost of medications required for recovery or long-term management of injury symptoms.

Calculating economic damages meticulously is essential to ensure that victims or their families receive fair compensation and are able to cover these quantifiable financial burdens.

Past damages can be calculated using documentation like bills and receipts. Estimating future losses is more uncertain, as factors like medical advances or above-inflation cost increases could alter projected expenses.

Non-Economic Damages

In contrast to economic damages, non-economic damages encompass the intangible losses injury victims tend to experience. These may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Psychological distress
  • Disfigurement
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Loss of consortium

While economic damages are intended to cover financial losses, non-economic damages aim to compensate victims for their internal anguish and inconvenience. Understanding both types of damages is crucial for predicting malpractice settlement amounts in New York State.

The Role of Lawyers in Medical Malpractice Claims

The Role of Lawyers in Medical Malpractice Claims

As legal advocates and agents, attorneys play a pivotal role in helping victims of medical malpractice navigate the legal process and seek compensation. Here are just a few of the benefits they offer.

Legal Knowledge and Evaluation

Lawyers who focus on medical malpractice possess a deep understanding of the complex laws, regulations, and legal standards governing these cases, including the grounds for and conditions of settlements.

They can review medical records, expert testimony, and other evidence to evaluate the relative strength of the plaintiff's claim. This legal knowledge allows them to gauge the viability of the case and assess the likelihood of reaching a successful settlement or verdict.

An experienced medical malpractice lawyer can also provide insight into probable settlement ranges based on outcomes in comparable cases. Such evaluation serves to set realistic expectations for plaintiffs and helps guide negotiations.

Mediation and Settlement Agreement

Lawyers who know how to handle medical malpractice cases effectively can help you get the best possible settlement by performing the following duties:

  • Evaluating the strength of your case and determining your potential settlement options.
  • Gathering and organizing the evidence necessary to support your claim.
  • Developing a strategy for presenting this evidence to the defendant and/or a judge and jury.
  • Negotiating a settlement agreement on your behalf.
  • Protecting your rights and interests throughout the settlement process.

If you've been injured due to medical malpractice, it's important to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney to discuss your case. A lawyer can help you understand your options and represent you in negotiations with the defendant or in court.

Caps on Medical Malpractice Damages

Medical malpractice caps limit the amount of non-economic damages that can be awarded to victims of medical malpractice. Remember that non-economic damages are those that aren't easily measured in monetary terms, such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Currently, 34 states have caps on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. The limits vary widely from one state to the next, with some imposing caps as low as $250,000 and others having none at all.

Medical malpractice caps can significantly impact the total amount that victims of medical malpractice stand to receive.

In states with caps, such as California and Ohio, victims are often forced to accept lower settlements than they would in states without such limits. Unlike some states that cap medical malpractice damages, New York currently doesn't limit how much compensation patients can recover through medical malpractice lawsuits.


Do most medical malpractice cases settle out of court?

More often than not, medical malpractice claims are resolved through out-of-court settlements, as this is generally a quicker and less expensive way to reach a resolution. Settlements allow both parties to avoid the time and uncertainty of a courtroom trial.

How long does a New York medical malpractice lawsuit take to settle?

The duration of a medical malpractice lawsuit in New York depends largely on the complexity of the case, court schedules, and the tenor of the required negotiations. Some cases settle relatively quickly, while others can take several years to resolve. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer can provide a better estimate based on the specific details of your case.

Don't Face the Consequences of Medical Malpractice Alone

You aren't powerless to act. Turn to Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Firm for experienced guidance and advocacy.

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Consult an Attorney at Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Firm to Start Your Medical Malpractice Claim

Pursuing a medical malpractice settlement in New York requires careful procedural action and a thorough comprehension of the law. The experienced team at Jacob D. Fuchsberg knows all about the numerous, intricate factors that influence settlement amounts.

Whether you're seeking justice for yourself or a loved one, our dependable legal guidance can help you make informed decisions as you seek fair compensation. Contact us today to determine the full value of your claim and get the support you need.

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