What Are the Four Elements of a Medical Malpractice Case?

Doctors and other medical professionals have a duty to provide the best possible care to patients. When medical professionals fail to meet the necessary standards, injured victims may have a medical malpractice case on their hands.

When it comes to injury cases, medical malpractice is often among the most complex and challenging to navigate. For a case to be successful, it must contain the following four elements. Here are a few points to keep in mind if you’re unhappy with your medical provider.


Duty of care is usually quite easy to satisfy in medical malpractice cases. You must show that the person was responsible for providing medical care to you, meaning that you had a doctor-patient relationship with them. For instance, a doctor casually providing advice at a party would not constitute duty of care, since you do not have a professional relationship with that person.


More challenging is proving that the person breached their duty of care, which is also known as dereliction. To satisfy this element, it must be shown that the doctor did not uphold the standard of care expected from medical professionals when they’re treating patients. Keep in mind that a doctor can cause an injury to a patient and not be considered negligent in their actions.

Direct Cause

Once you’ve established that duty of care has been breached, the next step is to show that the breach directly led to resulting injuries. Imagine that a doctor misdiagnoses a patient and the person’s health condition becomes worse without the proper treatment. In this instance, the doctor’s inability to correctly diagnose the patient led to new health effects.


Medical malpractice cases also involve actual losses, both economic and non-economic. An economic loss would be medical bills and lost wages that resulted from the injury. A non-economic loss would be the pain and suffering that a person experiences as a result of their injuries.

Because medical malpractice cases are so complex, you must have the right legal team in your corner. Hinkle Law Offices, LLC offers decades of experience to our clients, whether you’ve experienced a slip and fall accident or are the victim of a negligent driver.

Feel free to contact us today for more information on our personal injury services. You can also schedule a consultation in Albuquerque by calling (505) TUF-HELP.