If you’ve lost a family member as the result of what you believe to be medical malpractice, you undoubtedly have many questions and concerns. One question you may have is whether or not an autopsy is necessary to pursue a medical malpractice claim? As is the case with many legal considerations, the answer to the question of whether you need to obtain an autopsy does not elicit a strictly black and white answer.
Overview of a Medical Malpractice Claim
A medical malpractice claim is one that is brought when a family member dies as the result of the negligence of a healthcare provider. Medical malpractice laws vary somewhat from one state to another. Certain close family members are able to pursue a medical malpractice claim. These may include:
Is There a Legal Requirement for an Autopsy for a Medical Malpractice Claim?
Technically speaking, there is not a legal requirement for an autopsy to be performed if a medical malpractice claim is to be pursued. An autopsy can be required for other legal reasons. For example, if a person dies an unattended death, state law can require that an autopsy occur. But, again, not merely for the purposes of a medical practice claim.
Desirability of an Autopsy for a Medical Malpractice Claim
Despite there not being a legal requirement for an autopsy to be performed in order to pursue a medical malpractice claim in the United States, oftentimes this type of forensic investigation is desirable. In other words, pursuing an autopsy can result in the development of evidence that can back the contentions made in a medical malpractice claim.
The standard procedure is for an autopsy to be performed by the county coroner’s officer when the law mandates it to occur. There are other instances in which a hospital or medical center may elect to pursue an autopsy when a patient dies in a facility.
If you find yourself desiring to pursue a medical malpractice claim because of the death of a family member, you may wonder how you can go about obtaining an autopsy. The reality is that a medical malpractice lawyer (like a member of the legal team at The Doan Law Firm) can assist in making arrangements for this type of procedure. Time is of the essence when it comes to the desire for an autopsy as part of a medical malpractice case.
Access Services of a Private Pathologist
There are private pathologists that can be retained to undertake autopsy services. An experienced medical malpractice attorney can make arrangements to engage the services of qualified, reputable private pathologist.
It is important to bear in mind that if a private pathologist is engaged for an autopsy, that professional will likely be called upon to testify as an expert witness if the case comes to trial. The private pathologist likely will also be called upon to participate in a deposition as well.
Protect Your Legal Rights with a Qualified, Committed Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you have lost a family member as the result of healthcare negligence, you can reach a medical malpractice lawyer from The Doan Law Firm by calling (800) 349-0000. The Doan Law Firm medical malpractice lawyer telephone line is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, including all major holidays.
As a nationwide law firm, we can schedule an initial consultation for you with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer at any one of our offices. We can also arrange for an appointment at your home or any other location that you prefer. A virtual case evaluation and consultation with a medical malpractice attorney can be scheduled online as well. There is never a charge for an initial consultation with a Doan Law Firm medical malpractice lawyer.
The Doan Law Firm makes an attorney fee guarantee to you. Our firm will never charge a fee in your medical malpractice case unless we win for you. Our legal team is committed to fight hard to obtain justice, accountability, and the compensation you deserve. We are dedicated to win and to win big for you.