In your Professional Legal Nurse Consultant (PLNC) practice, you will find the majority of medical and nursing malpractice lawsuits do not go to trial. If you decided, in addition to reviewing medical records for merit, you would like to earn even more money testifying, more than likely it would mean testifying in pretrial proceedings.
Nursing and medical malpractice lawsuits are often quite complicated. Thus, many attorneys opt to settle their cases in advance of trial. Trials can be long, arduous, and do not always result in a judicious outcome. Some medical malpractice cases are detail specific and require hours, if not days, of expert witness testimony. As a result, these malpractice cases can be expensive with an uncertain outcome.
Settlement of lawsuits is more the norm than the exception. According to The Law Dictionary (What Percentage of Lawsuits Settle Before Trial) approximately 95 percent of pending lawsuits end in a pre-trial settlement. This means, a Professional Legal Nurse Consultant’s testifying expertise will be limited to a deposition, and maybe a pretrial proceeding.
According to a New York Times article (Study Finds Settling Is Better Than Going to Trial), most plaintiffs who passed on a settlement offer and instead went to trial, ended up getting less money than if they had taken the settlement offer. What does this mean for a Professional Legal Nurse Consultant? The chances of going to trial are much slimmer than one would think. If testifying experience as an expert witness is what you are looking for, it will likely come at the pretrial, and not trial, level.
Regardless, any given case on any given day, could end up in trial. So, the PLNC needs to be prepared and keep the schedule clear for trial testimony.
For tips and tricks in testifying, get the book The Testifying Nurse Expert Witness which will give you the confidence to take the stand. Whether or not you ever testify, you need this legal nurse consultant knowledge.