In most personal injury cases, attorneys advocating on behalf of injured parties do not like to submit cases to binding arbitration and prefer going to trial. During the arbitration process, an arbitrator is presented evidence, and once each side makes their argument, the arbitrator rules. There is no appeal of the arbitrator’s decision. However, for the reasons set forth below, medical malpractice attorneys prefer the binding process of arbitration.
Historically, data suggests that plaintiffs receive better outcomes at arbitration than if they go to trial. Only 21% of medical malpractice cases that have gone to trial had a result that favored the plaintiff. Jurors often feel compassionate toward doctors and even if there is compelling evidence against the doctor. Additionally, many medical malpractice cases are complex and can involve many expert witnesses. By contrast, arbitrators in medical malpractice cases often retired judges or attorneys with years of experience in the medical malpractice field. In general, arbitrators already have a foundation of medical/legal knowledge and can better understand the facts and expert testimony of a medical malpractice case.
Kaiser Permanente is a large health maintenance organization in California and requires medical malpractice claims to be submitted to binding arbitration. When a person has coverage through Kaiser Permanente they to sign an arbitration agreement.
Attorneys representing the victims in medical malpractice cases can potentially increase their odds of success by submitting their claims to binding arbitration. Medical malpractice claims are also very expensive to prove in court making binding arbitration a preferred option. Additionally, arbitration can see a faster resolution, especially with the courts backlogged due to COVID-19, which benefits both sides.
If you or a loved one were injured due to a doctor’s negligence, consider reaching out to our law firm today. We could walk you through your different legal options and help you determine the right course of action going forward.
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