Monday, July 19, 2010
1 - Special Liability Rules – Professional Negligence (Malpractice)
1. Special Liability Rules – Professional Negligence (Malpractice)
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE FOLLOWING IS TAKEN FROM SOME OF MY CLASS NOTES, SOME OF WHICH IS MY OWN PERSONAL WORK AND SOME OF WHICH BELONGS TO CONCORD LAW SCHOOL. IT IS POSTED TO HELP MY IL STUDENTS IN PARTICULAR. IT CANNOT BE DISSEMINATED WITHOUT EXPRESS, WRITTEN PERMISSION.
Malpractice is a rather popular topic. Much has been made over this issue with respect to tort reform. All in all, though, negligence is negligence, but here is a twist with respect to the standard of care.
When we speak of “professionals,” we mean skilled health care providers – doctors, dentists, optometrists, veterinarians, etc – as well as accountants, architects, attorneys, clergy, engineers, and teachers.
Rather than the reasonably prudent person standard of care, for professionals, the standard is what the reasonably well-qualified professional ordinarily and customarily does. To get to this standard, almost always, expert testimony is required.
One more thing: informed consent. A patient or client can authorize a professional’s action by consent, but this consent must be based on appropriate disclosure under the circumstances and upon reasonable alternative actions.
Next: Special Liability Rules – Prenatal Harm
Professor Doug Holden
© 2010. Douglas S. Holden. All Rights Reserved.