Medical negligence

French law firm intervening in medical negligence cases

Le Tutour Avocats represents victims of medical negligence and medical accidents.

The French Code of Public Health provides for two medical liability regimes:

  • When  a fault was committed by a hospital or a medical practitioner (Art. L1142-1 I° of the Public Health Code) such as

– A technical fault (error / delay in diagnosis, fault in the choice of treatment, improper performance of a medical act, leaving an object in the patient’s body, etc.)

– An ethical error (absent or insufficient information to the patient, failure to obtain prior consent, etc.)

– A fault in the organization of the facility (lack of equipment, insufficiently trained staff, lack of permanent care, etc.)

– A fault in the care given (lack of attentive and conscientious care, failure to manage pain, etc.)

– A misconduct in the monitoring of the patient.

– Obstetrical and gynecological violence (forbidden gesture of pressure on the belly to accelerate the delivery, performing gynecological procedures without the patient’s information or consent, etc.).

Each of these faults is likely to incur the liability of the health facility or the practitioner who caused them, who will be required to compensate all the losses resulting from them, based on a loss of chance or a full compensation.

The claim for compensation may be brought before a judge (civil or administrative depending on whether the defendant is a public or private person or body) and/or before a “CCI” (“Commission de Conciliation et d’Indemnisation”).

  • When no fault was committed (Art. L1142-1 II° of the Public Health Code)

 Three cases may allow victims to obtain compensation for their losses, in the absence of fault:

– A medical accident: an act of prevention, diagnosis or care which has abnormal consequences for the patient’s state of health and its foreseeable evolution.

– Iatrogenic affection: affection suffered as a result of medical treatment.

– Nosocomial infection: infection contracted during a stay in a health facility.

Provided certain conditions are met, victims can claim compensation for their losses through national solidarity before the “ONIAM” (in French, “Office National d’Indemnisation des Accidents Médicaux”).

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Examples of cases

  • The firm assists 1,300 woman who were implanted PIP breast implant in their claim against the manufacturer’s notified body, the TÜV companies TRLP and TRF before the Nanterre High Court in France.
  • The firm assists a victim of an orthopaedic surgeon’s mistake.
  • The firm assists a victim of gynaecological and obstetrical violence.
  • The firm assists a British family following the suspicious death in a French hospital of one of its members before the CCI.