What is Maryland’s “Certificate of Qualified Expert” Law?

Medical malpractice case filings have regulations under tort reform that helps to decrease the number of questionable malpractice cases brought before Maryland courts.

When a medical malpractice case begins, there is a list of criteria that either the plaintiff or the defendant must meet for the case to go to court. One of those requirements is the “Certificate of Qualified Expert.”

What is a “Certificate of Qualified Expert?”

The “Certificate of Qualified Expert” is several things. First, it is a document that the plaintiff must file within 90-days of filing a medical malpractice suit. Secondly, the document must be a statement made by a qualified expert that they have:

  1. Reviewed the plaintiffs’ case
  2. That there is malpractice – the original care provider did not meet the expected level of care for the plaintiff.

The document also must explain why the medical professional reviewing the case and making the statement is qualified. An example would be an OBGYN doctor who reviews the case of a patient who received care from another OBGYN doctor. The expert does not necessarily have to practice medicine in Maryland. An OBGYN doctor would not be considered a medical expert in the case where the defendant was a heart surgeon. Those pairings face expert against expert, and a stronger pairing would be a doctor who is also a heart surgeon. It is more comprehensive and plausible to hear from an equal. While both the OBGYN and the heart surgeon are doctors, their level of expertise varies.

Arbitration in Maryland Medical Malpractice Cases

A great many medical malpractice cases go to arbitration in Maryland, especially if the damages are over $30,000. The plaintiff and the defendant must file a “Certificate of Qualified Expert” form for arbitration. The plaintiffs will state that medical malpractice occurred, while the defendants’ will state that the appropriate level of care was provided.

While the Maryland courts try to steer all medical malpractice cases to an arbitrator, there are ways around that law. First, either the defendant or the plaintiff may choose not to go through arbitration. To do that, they must file a written waiver, which must be before 60-days from the filing date of either party. Failure to file on time will likely mean dismissal of the case, or the other party may receive a verdict in their favor.

Contact Jaklitsch Law Group Today For More Information About Medical Malpractice in Upper Marlboro, MD

The process of filing a medical malpractice case in Maryland is complex. As your medical malpractice lawyer, Bob Farley of The Jaklitsch Law Group is here to help you successfully meet all the requirements for filing a successful malpractice case in Maryland. He not only has the legal expertise to handle complicated malpractice cases, but he also has medical experts who are well-qualified as experts in their field.

Learn more about your case and malpractice by giving our experts a call 855-Big-Dog1!


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