The Indiana medical malpractice attorneys at Wagner Reese want to provide the absolute best service possible to everyone who comes to our law firm. In many cases, the best service possible means agreeing to represent the client and pursue compensation on their behalf. However, in some cases, the best service we can provide to an inquiring client is declining to take their medical malpractice case. Why would that be?

We always strive to provide a direct and timely answer about whether we are able to take on the case, after conducting a thorough review of your potential claim. Our review could reveal one or many reasons why we are unable to take on a particular case. For instance, your case may not be the right fit for our law firm. Or, based upon our experience, we may believe your case lacks legal merit, making pursuit of compensation impossible. Other potential cases may have significant hurdles,  and our firm must be selective about how many high-risk cases we pursue at a time, since we do not get reimbursed for case expenses or earn any fee unless there is a successful recovery.

Common reasons why a medical malpractice case might be refused by an attorney are:

  • Expired statutes: In Indiana, most medical malpractice and personal injury claims are limited by a statute of limitations of just two years. A statute of limitations is the time in which you can bring legal action for a particular claim. For medical malpractice claims, the statute of limitations typically begins from the date the first alleged malpractice occurred, with some exceptions. A court will not allow the pursuit of a claim filed after the expiration of the statute of limitations. Unfortunately, some people may be unaware of this important legal rule and, as a result, attempt to create a medical malpractice claim after expiration of the statute of limitations. A person may also attempt to create a claim shortly before the statute of limitations expires, when there is not enough time to conduct an appropriate amount of investigation into the matter.
  • Evidential threshold not met: In Indiana, medical malpractice claims can be very difficult and time consuming to pursue successfully. If fact, Indiana law requires most claims for medical malpractice to undergo a medical review panel process, whereby claims are judged for their merit by a panel of physicians before they can be pursued in state court. It is important to understand that malpractice has a legal definition that we must be able to successfully prove before the medical review panel and in a court of law.  Not all medical errors are considered malpractice, and not all bad outcomes may be considered malpractice. Attorneys often conduct detailed reviews to determine whether the facts of your situation could be considered malpractice. If your claim does not stand a strong chance of being deemed medical malpractice in a legal sense, then an attorney is likely to turn it down.
  • Low damages: The underlying purpose of every medical malpractice or personal injury claim is to secure financial compensation for the wrongfully harmed. When there has not been a significant amount of damages caused to the plaintiff as a result of the malpractice, the pursuit of the claim through courtroom representation may be excessive or unnecessary.,  Medical malpractice cases often require significant resources to pursue, and it is our goal to ensure that we limit our cases to those in which the investment is worthwhile for our clients, and for our law firm.

Miscellaneous Reasons: 

  • Conflict of Interest
  • Records don’t support the story
  • Another attorney dropped your case​​​​

Of course, the aforementioned list is not all-inclusive. There are numerous additional reasons why a medical malpractice case may be excessively difficult to pursue, may lack legal merit, or may not be an appropriate case for our particular law firm.

While Wagner Reese may decide not to investigate or pursue your potential case, our decision is not intended to minimize in any way what you have experienced . It is simply based on our legal analysis regarding the assessment of our ability to successfully bring a claim. It is very important to understand that the opinions expressed regarding whether we can pursue a case are ours alone based upon the facts we have available to us at that time. Another attorney may reach a different conclusion regarding your potential claim.