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4 Ds you must prove in a medical malpractice claim

On Behalf of | Jan 9, 2024 | Medical Malpractice

Suspecting that someone who treated you made an error is not enough reason to bring a claim against them. Because medical professionals are so essential to a functioning society, the law places strict limits on when you can claim against them. The burden of proof you’ll need to show is much higher than in something like a car crash claim.

Your case will rest upon your ability to prove that four things were true. Some call them the 4 Ds:


You need to ensure you are claiming against the appropriate person or medical establishment. Often, it is straightforward, but sometimes doctors or medical centers may argue they were not the ones with the duty of care toward you at that particular moment in time.


You must show the professional was negligent or deviated from the standard of care expected of someone in their position. What exactly that standard of care was will be determined by gathering the opinions of other medical professionals with appropriate knowledge and standing.


You’ll need to demonstrate what harm they did to you. Typically, it needs to be something major, not something that will quickly resolve itself.

Direct cause

You know that going to the treatment you received did not improve things for you, but that does not necessarily mean it made it worse. Any harm you suffered could potentially have been a coincidence. You’ll need to prove it was not and that whatever the medical professionals did (or did not do) was to blame for the harm you suffered.

If you believe you have a case, it’s important to learn more about how a claim could work and how likely you are to succeed.