What Is Corporate Negligence?

What Is Corporate Negligence?


If you’re injured in a hospital, who is responsible? The doctor treating you or the hospital itself? Before 1991, the answer was the doctor. Since doctors and surgeons are not technically the employees of the hospital and may in fact work for multiple facilities, hospitals would separate themselves from medical malpractice lawsuits and other lawsuits by claiming doctors were not employees, and therefore hospitals were not technically responsible for the negligent or reckless actions of their surgeons or medical professionals.

This changed in 1991, with the case Thompson v. Nason Hospital, where a judge ruled the Pennsylvania Hospital was responsible for the actions of its employees and surgeons. Since then, what is known as corporate negligence doctrine has been applied to other cases and has found any small medical business practices or any large medical business — including a hospital, a dental clinic, a nursing home — is responsible for the negligence of doctors, surgeons, employees and staff they hire.

What Does Corporate Negligence Doctrine Mean for You?

If you are injured in a nursing home, hospital or any type of healthcare facility or health-related business, you may be able to file a claim against the individual who caused you harm as well as the facility itself, as long as negligence or recklessness caused your injuries.

Under the corporate negligence doctrine, hospitals and other healthcare businesses are responsible for:

  • Hiring safe staff, employees, doctors, surgeons and other workers and ensuring they are properly trained and competent
  • Implementing safety and care policies protecting the well-being of patients and guests
  • Providing a safe and clean environment

Launching a Legal Claim Against the Hospital

Even with the corporate negligence doctrine, filing a medical malpractice or personal injury lawsuit against a healthcare business can be a challenge. Doctors and other healthcare professionals are protected by unions, professional associations and often other professionals. You may not have access to all of the files and information you need in order to prove negligence occurred. In addition, hospitals and other healthcare facilities have legal teams and large insurance companies protecting them from liability.

If you have been injured in a healthcare facility, a doctor’s clinic, a walk-in clinic, a dentist’s office, a nursing home or any healthcare-related business, contact the New Orleans medical malpractice attorneys at Irpino, Avin & Hawkins Law Firm for a consultation. Our attorneys are not afraid to represent clients against large defendants, and we have medical consultants as well as other experts we can draw on to build strong cases.

Above all, we’re proud of our dedication to our clients. If we believe strongly in a client’s case, we will not rest until we have provided our clients with the best care and the best legal support possible. To find out more about our award-winning independent law firm and to learn what Irpino, Avin & Hawkins Law Firm can do for you, contact us today.

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