Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Answers to Common Questions about Your Case

At Weston Smith Law, our practice area focuses entirely on medical malpractice, personal injury, and nursing home abuse. We work tenaciously to bring our clients full and fair compensation for the injuries suffered from others through wrongdoing. These types of cases can run from the simple to the complex, from lesser injuries such as broken bones to catastrophic injuries such as spinal cord damage. Every case is unique with its own set of circumstances which is why it is necessary to speak with our experienced St. Petersburg attorney about your situation. However, below you will find general answers to common questions that can arise in these matters.

Have more questions? Contact Weston Smith Law at (727) 408-6100 to book your free case evaluation with our St. Petersburg lawyer today.

  • Q:What is my medical malpractice case worth?

    A:In Florida, the “standard of care” has a specific legal definition set forth in Florida Statute 766.102(1). That law provides that the prevailing professional standard of care for a given health care provider shall be that level of care, skill and treatment which, in light of all relevant surrounding circumstances, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by reasonably prudent similar health care providers. In order to successfully prove medical malpractice, we must prove that the defendant physician breached the standard of care. In order to prove that, we must have a retained expert physician testify that the defendant physician breached the standard of care. In every case I retain a physician, often more than one, in different specialties, to review the records and materials in the case and render an opinion as to whether the standard of care was breached and whether that caused an injury.

  • Q:What does “standard of care” mean in a medical malpractice case?

    A:The standard of care in medical malpractice differs from that of personal injury because it deals with a profession. Health care providers are under an obligation to practice within the prevailing professionla standare of care. The prevailing professional standard of car for a given health care provider is that level of care, skill, and treatment which, in light of all relevant surrounding circumstances, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by reasonably prudent similar health care providers. Certain practices in medical care are accepted as “standard,” meaning they are considered to be how you would treat the patient for best possible results. When these treatments are not done, it can be seen as a dereliction of duty. These standards must be shown to the court through expert testimony by other medical professionals in the same specialty area.

  • Q:How long do you have to file medical malpractice cases in Florida?

    A:How long you have to file your claim is called a “statute of limitations.” In Florida the statute of limitations is 2 years. Generally speaking, the statute of limitations begins to run when you knew or should have known that you were the victim of medical malpractice. One should always view the statute as beginning to run at the earliest possible date, in that, if the 2-year period is permitted to run without proper legal action being taken, your claim would be barred. 

  • Q:What kinds of mistakes can lead to medical malpractice claims?

    A:Any breach of the professional standard of care could lead to a medical malpractice claim. That may include the failure to perform an appropriate medical evaluation, the failure to timely diagnose an illness or disease, the failure to prescribe proper medication, surgical mistakes, errors when delivering a baby, failure to properly interpret medical tests, emergency room errors, anesthesia errors and the failure to properly treat your condition or disease. The list goes on and on. Also important is the injury. It is not enough that there be an error or mistake, that error or mistake must cause an identifiable injury.

  • Q:Is nursing home abuse considered to be medical malpractice?

    A:No. In Florida, nursing home neglect or abuse is a separate claim from medical malpractice and governed by a completely different set of laws. Chapter 400 of the Florida Statutes governs nursing homes and sets forth the laws applicable to nursing home neglect or abuse cases. Chapter 766 of the Florida Statutes sets forth the laws applicable to medical malpractice. While there are similarities, there are also significant differences. I represent individuals and families who have been the victims of nursing home neglect or abuse and I represent those that have been the victims of medical malpractice.

  • Q:Will my medical malpractice case go to trial?

    A:It is impossible to predict which cases will or will not go to trial. There are many different issues that impact this question. However, medical malpractice cases are generally aggressively defended. Therefore, we evaluate and prepare every case with a plan to take it to trial, and always make strategic decisions during the case to maximize your recovery. 

  • Q:How are medical malpractice lawsuits resolved?

    A:If they are not resolved through a negotiated settlement between the parties, then they will go to court where the burden of proof will rest on you the plaintiff. The burden of proof standard in these cases is called a “preponderance of evidence.” This means that your evidence against the defendant must be more convincing or of greater quantity or quality than that of the opposing evidence.

What To Expect

  • Over 28 Years Trial Experience

    Weston Smith has a wealth of trial experience and isn't afraid to go to trial to fight for you.

  • Attention & Personal Experience

    You will always work directly with Weston Smith, getting the attention and personable experience you deserve.

  • Dedicated & Determined

    Weston Smith Law is committed to good communication and keeping you informed every step of the way.

  • Decades of Experience

    Weston Smith has almost 3 decades of experience and has the tools to effectively handle your case.

  • No Up Front Legal Fees

    With Weston Smith Law, you don't pay unless we recover the compensation you deserve.

Decades of Experience You Need

With over 20 years of experience, Weston Law Firm has the knowledge and dedication to fight for you. We aren't afraid to go to trial to get you the compensation you deserve.

  • Medical Malpractice $5 Million
  • Medical Malpractice $2.1 Million
  • Medical Malpractice $1.9 Million
  • Auto Accident $900,000
  • Medical Malpractice $850,000
  • Medical Malpractice $825,000
  • Medical Malpractice $800,000
  • Medical Malpractice $800,000
  • Medical Malpractice $600,000
  • Medical Malpractice $575,000


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