In order for a medical malpractice case to be successful, there are a number of pleading requirements that are needed. Below will be listed those requirements which apply only to the state of Florida.
(1) Unless the lawyer filing the medical malpractice case has made a reasonable investigation to determine whether there are means for a good faith that the medical professional or healthcare facility was, in fact, negligent in their treatment or care of the plaintiff, a wrongful death claim nor a personal injury case can be filed whether it is in contract or tort, or due to a medical negligence. Within the initial complaint, the lawyer must express in a certificate of counsel the fact that there was good faith that gave rise to believe that an action was appropriate to be filed against the defendant. As defined in s. 766.102, if the plaintiff or their lawyer has received a written opinion that is not subjected to the discovery phase by the defendant, good faith may be shown that it exists. If it is found by the courts that the certificate was not made in good faith and that there are no grounds to have filed a lawsuit against a medical professional who otherwise cooperated, then the court can send the issue to the Florida Bar for disciplinary review of the lawyer and they can award the defendant taxable costs and attorney’s fees.
(2) A three-month extension of the statute of limitations would be given in the case to allow the subsection investigation. This extension would be granted upon petition to the clerk and where the payment will be given to the clerk, which should not exceed $42. For this extension to be valid, there is no need for a court order and it is a period that is in addition to other periods. A fact to take into account is that once the statute of limitations has expired, this provision will not apply to the case in efforts to revive the deadline.
(3) As defined in s. 456.001, for the purpose of following through with the needed investigation, following the death of a person and before managing their estate, any evidence that is in the possession of the health care provider must be made available to the parent, spouse, adult children, chapter 744 guardian, chapter 765 proxy or surrogate, or chapter 709 attorney in fact. Information includes bills, pictures, films, or any other evidence that relates to the treatment and care that was provided to them. The health care practitioner would not be held liable or subjected to disciplinary action if they comply in good faith with providing such information.