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Can I Sue a Nurse for Medical Malpractice?

By Ephrat Livni, Esq. on December 11, 2015 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Nurses play a critical role in medical care and they can be named in a medical malpractice suit. But realistically, your lawyer will look for more defendants, particularly institutions with serious liability insurance whose failure to monitor the nurse might also be blamed for an injury.

Negligence in medicine is often not the fault of a single individual, so the institutions that employ medical professionals are included in a lawsuit. Whoever is involved in patient care will be scrutinized and administrators of hospitals and care facilities, such as nursing homes, have to defend policies and practices, training, and more.

Tort Law Principles

Tort law is named after the French word for a wrong, a tort. A patient injured in a medical setting who files a lawsuit is claiming a wrong, or negligence, in medicine, also known as medical malpractice. The principle behind torts is that negligence claims keep people -- professionals and citizens In everyday life -- responsible for wrongs caused by failure to act with reasonable care.

Harmed parties sue for negligence and recover for their injuries, proving they were wronged. The reason lawyers sue institutions for medical malpractice is not just because they tend to have much more money than individually named defendants. It's also because medical malpractice lawsuits are meant to keep hospitals and other care institutions on their toes.

Theoretically liability inspires everyone to keep up-to-date on best practices, and remain vigilant about providing care. But some people argue that limiting recovery in torts claims would make medicine much less expensive for everyone.

Filing a Lawsuit

If you have been injured in a medical setting, by a nurse or anyone else, speak to a lawyer. Medical malpractice claims are complex and states have varying laws, limiting time on making a claim. Consulting with a personal injury attorney costs nothing and many will work on contingency, meaning the fee is limited by law and comes out of any recovery.

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