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About Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC

HomeBlogMedical MalpracticeAbout Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC

About Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC

February 05, 2019
By Lafferty Gallagher Scott

At Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, bridging the gap between today’s troubles and a more secure tomorrow is what we do for people in the Toledo area and throughout Ohio. Since 1973, our lawyers have successfully helped countless numbers of people in these areas get the financial compensation they needed in cases of personal injury, medical malpractice, violations of employee rights, and denied insurance claims.

At Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC, our experience with personal injury claims, medical malpractice actions, and the tactics of insurance companies goes back a long way. This means that when you come to our firm for help, we’re not simply going to talk with you for a short time and then refer you to another attorney because your case is too difficult or complex. Instead, we do what we promise to do. We’re very experienced, and we have the resources, the technology and the know-how to do the work ourselves.

Our Commitment to Quality

In our practice of personal injury law, we have been fortunate to have enjoyed considerable success for our clients, and in the process have attained high levels of achievement within our profession. Jon, Tom and Mickey all have AV ratings by Martindale-Hubbell, evidencing the highest level of ethical and professional conduct. All three attorneys have been very active within the legal profession, serving on numerous committees and boards, as well as lecturing on the law throughout Ohio. All of our attorneys are members of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. Contact our Toledo office today to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.

Throughout our website, you will see verdicts and settlements that we have obtained on behalf of our clients. Although we are certainly proud of our accomplishments in obtaining these outcomes, it is more important that these verdicts and settlements have provided the necessary funds to enable our clients to lead their lives with dignity, self-respect and financial security.

Tort Reform

At Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC, we are committed to overturning the so-called “tort reform” laws that have been enacted in the State of Ohio. In 2003, the Republican-controlled Ohio State legislature passed, with little deliberation or thought, medical malpractice tort reform. This was followed in 2005 by a general overall “tort reform” law that affects all personal injury cases. These “tort reform” laws contain many anti-consumer and anti-patient provisions. Perhaps the most onerous provision is the denial of the right to trial by jury.

Both the United States Constitution and the Ohio Constitution guarantee citizens the right to trial by jury. The 2003 Ohio Medical Malpractice Tort Act basically takes this right away from all Ohio citizens by placing caps, or limits, on the amount of money that a patient injured as a result of medical malpractice can recover for pain and suffering. In non-catastrophic injuries, the patient can only recover $250,000.00. In catastrophic cases, such as paraplegia, quadriplegia and comatose patients, the legislation allows the injured patient to recover only $500,000.00 for his or her pain and suffering. This means that a 25 year-old patient who is rendered quadriplegic due to medical malpractice, and has a normal life expectancy to 75 years of age, is going to receive only $10,000.00 per year for his or her pain and suffering.

Not surprisingly, the Ohio State legislature does not want jurors in medical malpractice cases to know of these caps or limitations. The law specifically provides that jurors in medical malpractice cases cannot be told of these limitations. A jury in a medical malpractice case could find that an injured patient is entitled to receive $1,000,000.00 as compensation for his or her pain and suffering. However, the law provides that the judge presiding over the case must reduce the verdict to $250,000.00 in non-catastrophic cases or $500,000.00 in catastrophic cases. This denies the injured patient his or her right to a trial by jury. Clearly, the Ohio State legislature does not believe in the right to trial by jury guaranteed to all Ohio citizens, and the members of the legislature evidently do not trust the wisdom of the citizens/jurors who voted them into office.

A study of medical malpractice by Harvard University, known as the Harvard Medical Practice Study reveals some astonishing numbers. As part of an interdisciplinary study of medical injury and malpractice litigation, the Harvard researchers reviewed 30,121 randomly selected records from 51 randomly selected hospitals in New York State. In reviewing the records, the researchers found that in 3.7% of the cases resulted in adverse events. Of those where an adverse event was observed, over one-quarter of injuries were the result of negligence by a medical professional. And, of those injuries attributable to negligence, 2.6% resulted in permanent disabling injuries, and 13.6% resulted in death.

In estimating the totals for all of New York State patients, the Harvard researchers found that of the 2.67 million patients of New York hospitals, approximately 27,179 injuries resulted from negligence by medical professionals. Based on this data, the Harvard researchers concluded that there is a substantial amount of injury to patients, and that many of those injuries were the result of substandard care.

Medical malpractice is now the leading cause of accidental death in America. See Crowley, C.F., et al., Within Health Care Hides Massive, Avoidable Death Toll, Aug. 10, 2009. Approximately 200,000 people die each year from mistakes by medical professionals, and countless others are temporarily or permanently disabled. And, despite a call from the federal government challenging the medical community to cut the death toll in half, federal analysts believe the rate of medical error continues to increase.

Although these numbers are shocking, the majority of Americans have no knowledge of this crisis. This is because the medical community, the federal government, and most states have overwhelmingly failed to take the effective steps necessary to solve the problem. Instead, they are more concerned with punishing the persons injured by medical negligence and protecting the insurance companies and lobbyists.

The bottom line is, medical mistakes are happening at an alarming rate. But, when an injured patient seeks just compensation for his or her injuries, he or she is continuously accused of filing a frivolous lawsuit. Even when a jury finally determines that a suit was meritorious, the Ohio General Assembly and the Ohio Supreme Court punish the injured patient by imposing the caps on non-economic damages.

Realistically, there is little chance that the Republican-controlled Ohio Supreme Court will deem these laws unconstitutional, even though similar laws have been struck down on three prior occasions. That being said, the attorneys of Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC, are committed to doing everything possible to have these laws declared unconstitutional by the Ohio Supreme Court and to maximize client compensation under the law regardless of the difficulties imposed by the State Legislature or the Supreme Court.

Let’s be clear. Injuries to Ohio citizens are not political issues, nor should they be. Injuries, and the negligence that causes them, have no political affiliation. Unfortunately, the Ohio State Legislature and the Ohio Supreme Court have failed to realize this, as evidenced by the constant anti-patient and anti-consumer laws currently being passed and enforced. We know it’s tough and we know it’s not fair. But rest assured, we, the dedicated attorneys of Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC will do everything in our power to see that these anti-consumer and anti-patient laws are repealed and that Ohio families are returned to a position where they once again can benefit from the protections incorporated into the Ohio and United States Constitutions.

Contact our office today to speak with an attorney at Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC. We offer free consultations and we handle most cases on a contingency basis.

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