Medical Misdiagnosis Compensation in South Carolina

May 30, 2024 / RP Legal

When we are ill, we rely on healthcare professionals to tell us what’s wrong and provide treatment. However, what happens if the doctor doesn’t diagnose you properly? You may receive incorrect treatments that worsen the problem while not addressing it or no treatments at all.

Can you get medical misdiagnosis compensation in South Carolina? You can if your case qualifies. Contact us at Rikard & Protopapas to speak to a medical malpractice lawyer in Columbia, SC. We can provide an objective review of your case.

How Do You Qualify for Medical Misdiagnosis Compensation?

To be eligible for compensation, you must prove that the misdiagnosis caused specific harm. In some cases, misdiagnosis results in death. Eligible survivors may also be able to file a claim.

Are There Different Types of Diagnostic Mistakes?

There are three main kinds of medical misdiagnosis, any of which can cause conditions to worsen because patients don’t receive the right type of treatment.

Delayed diagnosis

A delayed diagnosis happens when a patient goes to their physician because they are experiencing symptoms or are feeling unwell, but the healthcare provider fails to diagnose the condition promptly. Sometimes, physicians eventually arrive at a correct diagnosis.

However, taking too long can unnecessarily worsen a patient’s condition because the patient didn’t receive prompt treatment. Common examples of a delayed diagnosis leading to deteriorating medical conditions and unneeded pain and suffering include:

  • Belatedly discovering cancer is present
  • Not following up on abnormal test results
  • Dismissing some reported symptoms as indicators of a less serious condition
  • Failing to realize that a patient had a stroke
  • Failing to recognize a medical emergency and take quick action

Particularly with a delayed cancer diagnosis, it may be too late for the patient to receive appropriate treatments. Your attorney can tell you the kinds of medical misdiagnosis compensation you might obtain.

Failing to diagnose

Unfortunately, some patients never receive the correct diagnosis for their condition. Without a diagnosis, physicians cannot effectively establish a treatment plan.


A misdiagnosis occurs when healthcare providers say patients have a condition they don’t. This can be harmful in different ways. The person receiving the misdiagnosis may receive unwarranted treatments that may cause additional harm.

For instance, prescribing heart medication to someone who doesn’t need it may cause heart problems to develop. In other cases, patients may undergo unneeded surgeries that don’t do anything to fix their problem.

In addition, the patient is not getting any treatment for their condition. Lack of treatment can make the condition worsen, possibly leading to death.

What Are Common Causes of Medical Misdiagnosis?

Many things can cause physicians to make errors that may qualify you to seek medical misdiagnosis compensation:

  • Failing to order tests or misinterpreting test results
  • Not referring patients to specialists if their condition warrants it
  • Prescribing the wrong medications or incorrect dosages
  • Lack of knowledge, inattention or failure to notice important entries in the patient’s medical history
  • Overworked staff who are not paying attention to warning signs of a medical emergency
  • Lab or diagnostic equipment errors, including malfunctions, mixing up patient files and false negatives or positives

Many other types of medical errors can cause harm. If you think you have a medical misdiagnosis claim, contact Rikard & Protopapas for a free consultation. We can come to your SC location or arrange a virtual conversation. We will tell you if you have a valid case and how we can help.

Is Misdiagnosis a Form of Medical Malpractice in South Carolina?

South Carolina recognizes misdiagnosis as a form of medical malpractice. Healthcare providers must uphold high standards of care. When they don’t, and that failure harms a patient, they may be guilty of medical malpractice.

To receive medical misdiagnosis compensation, you need evidence to prove that:

  • Someone owed you a duty of care: When a medical practitioner agrees to treat you, they owe you a duty of care.
  • That party breached their duty of care: A medical misdiagnosis breaches their duty.
  • You sustained harm: Your condition worsened or you developed a new issue.
  • The harm and associated damages directly resulted from the breach: The misdiagnosis caused your worsened condition, additional expenses and adverse effects on your quality of life.

Proving medical malpractice often requires an investigation involving other medical professionals. The medical misdiagnosis attorneys at Rikard & Protopapas have the resources and experience to gather the right evidence to support your claim.

When Can You File a Lawsuit for Misdiagnosis in South Carolina?

If your case meets the criteria, you typically have three years to file a misdiagnosis lawsuit in South Carolina. There are exceptions to this statute of limitations, but your lawyer can tell you if you are nearing your deadline.

These cases typically start with filing an insurance claim seeking medical misdiagnosis compensation. Your legal team needs time to investigate and build a strong case on your behalf, then enter negotiations with liable insurers to reach a reasonable settlement amount. If the insurance company doesn’t cooperate, we may suggest filing a civil lawsuit to hold them fully accountable.

We can often settle your claim without filing a lawsuit, but we need sufficient time to do so effectively. That’s why we recommend contacting us as soon as you realize a medical misdiagnosis may have harmed you.

Should You Accept a Settlement for a Medical Malpractice Claim of Misdiagnosis in South Carolina?

Initial South Carolina medical malpractice settlements offered by insurance companies are usually intentionally low.

These companies know how much your medical misdiagnosis compensation claim is worth but may use several strategies to minimize your payout. You can negotiate for a higher offer.

Negotiating settlements successfully requires skill, experience and knowledge of your case’s worth. Insurance companies have teams of attorneys to represent their best interests, and you deserve to have a staunch advocate for yours.

While you don’t have to hire a lawyer, misdiagnosis lawsuit settlements are often substantially higher if you do.

How Can Rikard & Protopapas Help Increase Your Medical Misdiagnosis Compensation?

The legal team at Rikard & Protopapas knows the applicable SC laws and has 119 years of combined experience.

Our firm has won tens of millions for past clients in various personal injury claims, including medical malpractice, earning us a 97% success rate.

We have the resources to handle your case effectively and maximize your medical misdiagnosis compensation amount. Contact us 24/7 to find out more about how we can help.

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