Compensation Claim for Surgical Mistakes

Would a compensation claim for surgical mistakes include the wages I lose when taking time off work to undergo revision surgery?

A compensation claim for surgical mistakes should include every aspect of how a medical error has affected you personally – or may affect you in the future – and this would include the recovery of lost wages due to undergoing revision surgery.

Assuming liability for your original injury has been acknowledged, how much compensation for a mistake during surgery you are entitled to is usually divided into four primary areas:-

Compensation for Pain and Suffering

This element of your claim for surgical mistake injury compensation would account for any pain and suffering “above and beyond” what you would reasonably been expected to experience after the original surgery.

Compensation for Psychological Trauma

If you have been diagnosed with a psychological injury due to the nature of the surgical mistakes or because you develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), anxiety or depression during your recovery, this element should be included in your compensation claim for surgical mistakes.

Compensation for your Loss of Amenity

Your ‘Loss of Amenity’ refers to any everyday task, leisure pursuit or social activity you have been unable to participate in which would form part of your regular routine and which you would have been able to do where it not for the errors made during surgery.

Compensation for Financial Expenses

The compensation for a mistake during surgery you receive should return your financial position to what it would have been had the surgical mistake never been made. Therefore, any cost you have incurred or any income you have lost should be returned to you when your claim for surgical mistake injury compensation is settled.

Not all of these areas will apply in every compensation claim for surgical mistakes, and there may be other factors which have to be taken into account depending on your personal circumstances. The important thing to remember is that any expense or loss of income you wish to recover in a claim for compensation for a mistake during surgery has to be justified by a receipt, invoice or – in the case of lost wages – by payslips indicating how much you usually earn.

To get a more accurate assessment of the surgical mistake injury compensation you should be entitled to receive, it is recommended that you speak with a solicitor, explain to him or her what mistakes were made during your surgical procedure, the steps you have already taken to recover compensation for a mistake during surgery and when your revision surgery is due to take place.

If the revision surgery is scheduled in the near future, it may be in your best interests to proceed with the compensation claim for surgical mistakes but delay settling the claim until it is known exactly the value of wages you have lost due to your original surgeon´s negligence. This is a decision that should be made after you have discussed your personal situation with a solicitor – which it is recommended that you do at the first practical opportunity.

This is an Information site only – if you feel you have a potential claim, you should discuss your situation with a solicitor registered with the Law Society of Ireland.