When you opt for a medical procedure, you hope that everything goes as planned. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. If you find yourself in a worse position, there are a few key steps you need to take.

The first thing you need to do is receive treatment. You don’t want to wait around and hope that your health improves. You also don’t want to wait around for guidance from a legal professional. Your well-being is top priority, so make sure you do whatever it takes to better understand what went wrong and how to fix it.

Once you confirm the error and understand your prognosis, you can then determine if bringing forward a medical malpractice lawsuit would be in your best interest.

If you think you have a case, here are some of the first steps to take:

  • Contact the medical professional who made the mistake: Do this before you file a claim to get a better idea of what went wrong, if they can fix it and how they propose to do so. Be careful about agreeing to a follow-up procedure with a medical professional who has already made a mistake.
  • Contact the appropriate licensing board: The licensing board doesn’t have the power to take immediate action against the medical professional, such as by requiring them to compensate you, but they can provide guidance while opening an investigation.
  • Learn how the law works: It’s easy to lose track of time as you get treatment for your condition. You must understand how medical malpractice laws work, including the timeframe in which you have to file a claim.
  • Consider settling out of court: Don’t assume that your case must go to court in order to get results. Medical malpractice cases can be both costly and time-consuming, so an out of court settlement may be the best way to obtain compensation and put this part of your life in the past.

If a medical procedure goes wrong, don’t assume it’s “just the way it is.” Learn more about what went wrong, as this will give you the information you need to take the next steps. When you combine knowledge of the error with information on the legal system, you’re in better position to protect your legal rights.