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Can You Sue a Doctor in NYC?

When a person selects a doctor to treat their injuries or conditions, they likely do not expect that they will have to file a medical malpractice claim against that doctor. However, some doctors fail to act diligently when treating a patient, which could lead to liability if that patient suffers a serious injury. If you or a family member was injured due to the negligence of a doctor, you should consult with an experienced New York City medical malpractice lawyer today. At Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP, we can help you pursue a claim against a negligent doctor that caused your injuries. Our firm is here to explain how to sue a doctor in the State of New York.

Grounds for Suing a Doctor for Medical Malpractice or Negligence in NYC

Some people have adopted the false belief that a doctor could be held liable for medical malpractice for any type of mistake, even if the mistake only had a minimal impact on a patient. For example, experiencing pain after a successful surgical procedure does not mean that a patient is entitled to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against a surgeon.

Medical malpractice requires that a medical practitioner’s negligence violated common practices within their specialized field among professionals with similar experience. However, this is not the only element that must be shown to prevail in a claim for medical malpractice.

To have grounds to sue a doctor for medical malpractice, a claimant must also show that they had a patient-doctor relationship with the doctor accused of medical malpractice. For example, visiting a doctor for the purpose of treatment or diagnose a condition would show that a person had a patient-doctor relationship. Alternatively, receiving casual advice from a doctor at a social event is not enough to claim a patient-doctor relationship.

Once a patient-doctor relationship has been established, a claimant can then allege that a doctor breached the duty of care imposed by this relationship. The duty of care requires that a doctor upholds the standard of medical care that is common within a particular field of medicine. For example, failing to diagnose a pregnant mother with an infection that could harm her child can be used as evidence that a doctor breached their duty of care.

If a claimant can show that a doctor breached the duty of care, they must then show that the doctor’s negligence was the cause of their injury and that their negligence resulted in damages for the claimant.

If you are concerned about whether you can satisfy all the elements of a medical malpractice claim, you should continue reading and speak with an experienced New York City personal injury lawyer.

Liability for a Doctor Negligence Lawsuit in NYC

If you wish to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against a doctor that caused your injuries, you should be aware that there could be other parties that can also be held liable. For example, if a doctor was operating as an employee of a hospital, the hospital could be held liable for their actions through the doctrine of vicarious liability. This doctrine states that accidents that occur within an employee’s scope of employment could be imputed to their employer under certain circumstances. As a result, if a doctor prescribes the incorrect medication while working for a hospital, the hospital could be held liable.

It is important to note that some hospitals will hire doctors as independent contractors in order to avoid liability for any malpractice they may commit. It can often be difficult to determine whether a doctor is an independent contractor if they often operate within a hospital. However, a practice being named after a doctor is a good indication the hospital may not directly employ them.

Common Types of Malpractice Our NYC Personal Injury Firm Handles

Our team of attorneys has litigated a number of medical malpractice claims. We recognize the many serious mistakes that could be made if a doctor does not act with care towards a patient. For example, incorrectly using birth-assisting instruments when delivering a child could be dangerous for the newborn and the mother.

Other forms of medical malpractice that our firm handles include:

  • Failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis of a condition
  • Improperly administering anesthesia during an operation
  • Performing surgery on the wrong side of a patient’s body
  • Leaving a medical instrument inside a patient during a surgery
  • Failure to identify issues that could affect a mother’s pregnancy or the delivery of the child

Consult with Our Experienced NYC Doctor Negligence Attorneys Today

If you were a victim of medical malpractice, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney today. At Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP, our injury lawyers possess extensive experience litigating many complex medical malpractice claims, and we are here to fight for you. To schedule a free case evaluation, contact Sullivan & Galleshaw, LLP at (718) 843-0300. You can also contact the firm online.


Over our many years practicing personal injury law, our highly experienced legal team has earned a reputation for excellence. Our attorneys have appeared on major media outlets such as Fox News and MSNBC . Our firm’s legal accomplishments have been profiled by the New York Law Journal, the Los Angeles Times, ESPN, and the Associated Press. We have won multiple verdicts in excess of $1 million, making us proud members of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, a prestigious organization which admits fewer than 1% of all attorneys in the United States. We were named Super Lawyers in 2011, and enjoy a perfect 10/10 Superb rating on national attorney database Avvo.

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