A Michigan man underwent gastric bypass surgery and died as a result of medical error. The doctor that performed the surgery on the man connected the wrong organs together, which resulted in the man’s death shortly after the surgery was complete. The man’s widow was awarded over $1 million as a result of his death.
Many may first hear a $1 million verdict and cringe because of the large number. People may think that that amount of money is too much. However, if these critics would stop and take a minute to see how this number was reached, they would quickly realize the conclusions they were jumping to were wrong.
In wrongful death, medical malpractice and many other lawsuits, there is a way a jury comes to the figure they determine is a reasonable award. They take into consideration how long the person would have worked and how much money they would have made. They take into account the medical bills and if the person is still alive the future bill and care that that person will need. When these large numbers are broken down into categories and calculated out, it should not be surprising why such a large amount of money is awarded.
For instance, this man was 44 years old and had he lived he would have worked on average at least another 21 years. 21 years of salary paid out all at once is going to be a large number and that does not take into the other categories listed above as well as those not mentioned. Maybe it’s time we stop jumping on band wagons we know nothing about.