A medical malpractice lawsuit is a civil claim against someone who you feel harmed you. The person caused you injury of some type because of negligence.
In a civil lawsuit, you generally have two types of damages you can claim. These include punitive and compensatory.
Punitive damages are those imposed by the court to punish the defendant in a case. They are often used to prove a point or to emphasize the wrong done by the party to the plaintiff. The Illinois Compiled Statutes ban you from collecting punitive damages for a medical malpractice claim. If you ask for them in your claim, the court will simply ignore or deny the request when making its decision.
As the name suggests, compensatory damages are those the court awards to compensate you for your losses and injuries. In a medical malpractice case, the court may make the other party pay for your medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering and any other related costs you had due to the professional’s negligence. Compensatory damages are all you can claim in this type of case, so the award will cover everything you requested when making your claim.
Be aware that in many of these cases, you will settle before going to court. In that case, you receive a settlement instead of damages. The amount of the settlement is something you and the other party negotiate.
The damages you get in a medical malpractice lawsuit are typically compensatory in nature because state law prevents a court from awarding punitive or punishment damages.