When things go wrong during a cosmetic surgery procedure, the consequences for the patient can be devastating, not just physically but emotionally and financially as well.
While nothing can make up for the distress caused by a wrongful procedure, if you have suffered at the hands of a negligent cosmetic surgeon, you may be entitled to some compensation.
Today, cosmetic surgery is more than just a tummy tuck or a breast implant. This procedure is being done to reduce, increase and improve various parts of the body and as the scope of this type of surgery widens, so has the potential for different types of claims.
Some of the more common cosmetic surgery claims arise from something going wrong with these procedures:
• Breast augmentation
• Botox injections
• Plastic surgery
• Tummy tucks
• Eyelid surgery
• Brow lift
• Chemical peel
• Ear surgery
• Cosmetic dentistry
Do You Have A Case For Compensation?
From a legal standpoint, all medical practitioners, including doctors and plastic surgeons owe their patients ‘duty of care’. In lay terms, what this means is that these medical professionals are obligated to take reasonable precautions to ensure your safety and well being while you are in their care, whether it is for health or cosmetic purposes.
Cosmetic surgery is treated as any other area of medical practice and when something goes wrong, it is for the law to decide whether or not there is any legal liability to pay the patient compensation or damages for their injuries and resultant losses.
Not surprisingly, establishing liability is reasonably clear-cut in some cases, whereas in other cases, it could get quite complicated and expert medical opinion may be necessary.
What you should also know is that it may not be enough for you to file a claim simply because you are unsatisfied by the result of your cosmetic surgery. There is a fine line between being unhappy with the results and actual malpractice or negligence. The courts will never impose what is legally known as a ‘counsel of perfection’.
The legal stand is that prospective claimants ought to be realistic and reasonable about the outcome of the procedure that they had elected to undergo.
If you want to know where you stand and whether you are entitled to claim compensation for cosmetic surgery negligence, it is best to consult with a lawyer who specialises in these kinds of claims.
What Exactly Will You Get Compensated For?
Here’s what you might be entitled to claim compensation for if you’ve been at the receiving end of cosmetic surgery gone wrong:
• Physical injuries
• Psychological scars
• Loss of earnings
• The cost of having to undergo corrective procedures
• The cost of care
• Any other out of pocket expenditure directly related to the procedure
While calculating tangible compensation such as expenses incurred for corrective procedure and other medical expenses is fairly straightforward, calculating intangible compensation for psychological injuries and other inconveniences and losses can get quite complicated. This is one of the main reasons why you will need a really good cosmetic surgery claims solicitor on your side. Your solicitor will assess the level of compensation that you should be entitled to receive and will build your case so that you get the maximum award.
You are also entitled to claim compensation for the value of any care, even that provided gratis by family and friends. You will need to provide receipts, invoices and any other supporting documents to prove your losses.
An Interesting Clause That Comes Into Play In Cosmetic Surgery Claims
Before going ahead with the cosmetic surgery procedure, the surgeon is legally bound to discuss with you any potential risks and side effects that could be involved. If there are any alternative procedures, these should be discussed with you as well.
After you are aware of all the possible pros and cons of the procedure and its alternatives, the practitioner should then give you sufficient time and space to consider all the options and the possible outcomes and to weigh up the risks before you proceed. If you were not given the benefit of this ‘cooling off’ period, the practitioner is considered to be in breach and you have a strong case for cosmetic surgery compensation in the event that something does go wrong.