State Court Affirms $4 Million Wrongful Death Verdict in Medical Malpractice Case

The Idaho Supreme Court recently published an opinion affirming a $4 million jury verdict in a wrongful death and medical malpractice case filed by the husband of a woman who died after complications from a liposuction procedure performed by the defendant. The award, which includes over $1,250,000 in non-economic damages, was enhanced by the jury’s finding that the defendants acted recklessly in caring for the deceased woman.

Liposuction Patient Dies After Unknown Bacteria Is Introduced into Her System

The wife of the plaintiff in the case of Ballard v. Silk Touch Laser had a liposuction procedure performed by the defendant in 2010. Less than one week after the procedure, she died of septic shock from an unknown bacteria that was allegedly introduced into her system during the procedure. The plaintiff’s wrongful death lawsuit alleged that the defendant had negligently failed to sterilize equipment before performing the procedure and sought damages from the defendant. After a jury trial, the plaintiff was awarded a verdict totaling over $4 million. The defendant appealed the verdict to the Idaho Supreme Court.

The Defendant Challenges the Plaintiff’s Expert Testimony

On appeal, the defendant challenged the plaintiff’s use of an anesthesiologist as an expert witness to give testimony as to the appropriate standard of care that the plaintiff’s wife was entitled to receive. The appellate court found that the defendant never objected to the plaintiff’s proposed expert during the trial and could not raise the issue for the first time on appeal. Although the court noted that the plaintiff’s proposed expert was legally qualified to give testimony, the defendant’s failure to object to the testimony earlier made his arguments impossible on appeal.

Expert Testimony Requirements in Florida Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

Florida medical malpractice lawsuits require a plaintiff to call a medical expert witness to testify about the applicable standard of care that the patient was entitled to receive. Expert witnesses must be admitted to practice medicine in the state of Florida and practice in the same field of medicine as the defendant. Additionally, experts must rely on techniques and standards that are accepted by the medical community in which the defendant was practicing. If a plaintiff is unable to find a qualified expert to testify that the defendant violated the standard of care, they may be unable to obtain a judgment in their favor.

Finding Qualified Medical Experts for Florida Medical Malpractice Victims

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed as a result of South Florida medical malpractice or negligence, it’s essential to have a qualified medical expert to offer testimony as part of your legal strategy. The Miami medical malpractice attorneys at Friedman, Rodman & Frank have used hundreds of medical experts to help our clients successfully obtain compensation from the negligent medical providers they sued. Our network of medical experts can ensure a strong case is presented to the jury for a South Florida medical malpractice trial. At Friedman, Rodman & Frank, we represent clients in medical malpractice and other negligence cases throughout South Florida. Contact us and schedule a no-obligation consultation at no cost to you. Call us toll-free at 877-448-8585 or use our web form to be put in touch with a skilled attorney and discuss your case.

More Blog Posts:

Court Permits Wrongful Death Claim to Proceed after Personal Injury Judgment Had Been Awarded Based on Defendant’s Same Negligent Conduct, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published August 4, 2016.

Blatant Surgical Errors Remain Startlingly Common Despite Technological Advances in Medicine, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published August 18, 2016.

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