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Court Discusses Grounds for Setting Aside a Jury’s Verdict in a New York Medical Malpractice Case

Parties in medical malpractice cases typically ask juries to weigh the evidence presented at trial and issue a verdict based on that evidence. Parties do not always agree with the jury’s reasoning, though, and if they believe that the jury ruled improvidently, they can ask the court to set aside the verdict. As explained in a recent opinion delivered in a New York medical malpractice case, however, the court will only vacate a jury’s verdict if it is clear that it does not comply with the evidence presented. If you suffered losses due to negligent care rendered by a medical professional, it is smart to meet with a Rochester medical malpractice lawyer to assess your options for seeking damages.

Background of the Case

It is alleged that the plaintiff was admitted to the defendant hospital in 2009. A CT scan of the chest showed a large mass, and a biopsy confirmed that it was lymphoma. She subsequently began chemotherapy treatment through a mediport in her chest. During the administration of the chemotherapy, she complained of burning, and the treatment was discontinued.

Reportedly, it was later found that the needle had become displaced, causing the medication to infuse into the tissue surrounding the mediport and injuring the plaintiff. The plaintiff later filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant. A trial was held, which resulted in a jury verdict in favor of the plaintiff and an award of damages for suffering and pain. The defendant filed a motion asking the court to set aside the verdict. The court denied the defendant’s motion, and the defendant appealed.

Grounds for Setting Aside a Jury’s Verdict in a Medical Malpractice Case

On appeal, the court affirmed the trial court ruling. In doing so, the court explained that it would only grant a motion to set aside a jury verdict when there is simply no valid line of permissible inferences and reasoning that could potentially lead rational people to the conclusion reached by the jury based on the evidence presented at trial.

Under New York law, in order to establish a doctor’s liability for medical malpractice, a plaintiff must show that the doctor departed from the standards of practice accepted within the community and that such a departure proximately caused the plaintiff to suffer actual harm. To establish proximate cause, a plaintiff must offer medical evidence from which a reasonable person may conclude that it was more likely than not that the defendant caused the plaintiff’s injuries.

In the subject case, the court found that the evidence the plaintiff offered at trial was legally adequate to prove that the defendant deviated from the standards of practice and that such deviation caused the plaintiff harm. Thus, the court affirmed the trial court ruling.

Talk to a Skilled Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Doctors have an obligation to treat patients in a careful manner, and if they do not, they may be liable for medical malpractice. If you suffered losses due to the recklessness of a physician, you could be owed compensation, and you should talk to an attorney as soon as possible. The skilled Rochester medical malpractice lawyers of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers are adept at helping people injured by negligent doctors recover damages for their harm, and if we represent you, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. You can contact us via our form online or by calling us at 585-653-7343 to set up a conference.

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