Medical Malpractice

Punitive Damages and Billing Fraud. Two Things Worth Exploring In Every Medical Malpractice Case

February 6, 2020
Punitive Damages and Billing Fraud

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Punitive damages are rare in medical malpractice actions, but just recently, a New York County Judge ruled that The Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm should pursue this form of damages in six separate actions. Edward Hynes, the attorney who fought for these important decisions, is now working to fight an appeal of them.

Punitive damages are a type ofmonetary award given to deter or punish a party for their “bad” behavior.  They go above and beyond any actual damages,or injuries, someone may have.  One ofthe ways to get punitive damages in a medical malpractice action in New York isto show your medical provider acted with utter disregard for patient safety. 

How do you show utter disregard for patient safety?

  • One way is to show that a law was broken or not adhered to during the course of medical treatment.
  • Another way is to show that a patient consented to one doctor performing a procedure on them, but then another doctor performed it without the patient’s knowledge or consent.

Still another way to obtain punitive damages is to establish that your medical records were altered or changed to avoid liability.

Sometimes you can tell if your medical records were altered by comparing them to your insurance records, including the explanation of benefits from your insurance carrier.

All medical providers submit codes to bill insurance companies for care provided.  If a code was submitted for something different than what is reflected in your medical record, then you may have discovered that your records were altered, or that perhaps that insurance fraud (a serious crime) has occurred. Eddie Hynes has successfully used insurance records to prove both of these types of claims.

If any of these things have happened to you or someone you know, or if you believe you may have suffered from medical malpractice or medical billing fraud, please contact us online, or call The Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm at 212-869-3500. We can help you assess the situation and determine whether you are entitled to relief.