What Are The Odds of a Patient Winning A Medical Malpractice Case at Trial?

I have a medical malpractice case.  The doctor’s insurance company has refused to settle the case.  What are the odds that I will prevail at trial?

Health care providers generally win medical malpractice cases that are tried to a jury.  That does not mean that your case is likely to be lost – each case depends on its facts and,many other factors.

That being said, for the year ended June 30, 2009 there were 26 medical malpractice cases tried in Tennessee.  the data is not available, but based on past experience only 5 or 6 of those cases were won by the patient.  Stated differently, the win-rate for patients is less than 25% for cases that go to trial.

Tennessee is not an oddity in this regard.  According to Shannon Ragland, editor of the  the 2010 Kentucky Trial Court Review,  there were 47 medical trials in Kentucky in 2010. Only 13 of those cases resulted in a verdict for the patient or, in other words, a 27.6% win percentage for patients. The 13-year win-rate percentage (for 754 medical trials) in Kentucky is 23.2%.

Once again, the fact that more cases are lost than won does not mean anything about the likelihood of winning your case.  In fact, the only thing the loss rate tells us is that when medical malpractice insurance companies talk about all of these crazy jury verdicts in malpractice cases they must be talking about the cases they won.