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GP Negligence Compensation Claims

Here at McCarthy + Co, we have many years of experience dealing with a wide variety of medical negligence cases involving negligence on the part of general practitioners (GPs). On this page, we have provided some general guidance on this topic together with tips for bringing your claim.

GP negligence

Helpful Information

GPs assist patients with an extremely broad range of illnesses and medical issues. They are trained to understand many different medical fields yet will often lack specialist knowledge regarding specific types of diseases or physical problems. When a GP encounters a situation like this, they will refer their patient to a specialist who can assist them. However, GPs can and often do make mistakes that can have a devastating impact on the quality of life of their patients. They might, for example, fail to refer a patient to a specialist when needed or incorrectly prescribe the wrong medication to treat an ailment. In these circumstances like these, you may be eligible to bring a GP negligence compensation claim.

Bringing a claim for GP negligence

GPs attend to many patients daily, generally maintaining a very high standard of care. Yet, being human, they are prone to occasional errors that can have significant repercussions for their patients.

Scenarios where you may be able to bring a claim for GP negligence include:

  • Failure by your doctor to diagnose your medical condition properly.
  • Where your local healthcare provider has failed to provide an appointment to see a doctor quickly enough, resulting in the significant untreated worsening of your condition.
  • Failure by your doctor to carry out enough testing to accurately diagnose your condition.
  • Situations where you have been prescribed incorrect medication of treatment courses.
  • Failure by your doctor to recognise common but serious issues, where an earlier diagnosis may have significantly extended your life or prevented a significant decline in your quality of life.
  • Failure by your doctor to refer you to a specialist where it was needed.
  • Failure by your doctor to attend home visits, where required.
  • Failure by your doctor to keep accurate records, resulting in the obscuring of important patient information that impedes diagnosis and treatment.

Of course, there may be many other valid scenarios where it is possible to report your GP for negligence and bring a claim against them. Speak to one of our specialist medical negligence solicitors today for further advice.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Some of the questions often posed to our medical negligence team.

  • What are the consequences of GP negligence?

    Medical negligence isn't solely confined to hospitals; GP consultations can also lead to significant harm. For instance, failure to refer a patient for cancer investigations can worsen their condition. Incorrect medication prescriptions may cause serious, long-term side effects, while improper treatment assessments can result in organ damage. Failure to detect conditions like meningitis or unstable angina can lead to severe consequences like cardiac arrest. As our primary healthcare providers, GPs must accurately diagnose, prescribe, and refer when necessary. Negligence in these duties can seriously exacerbate conditions.

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  • Should I make a formal complaint?

    Yes, this should be the first thing you do if you believe your doctor has behaved negligently. Start by raising the complaint directly with the healthcare facility where your GP is based. Medical doctors are overseen by the Medical Council, which investigates complaints regarding a doctor's ability to practice medicine. If a complaint is deemed serious and questions a doctor's fitness to practice, the Council has the authority to limit the doctor's registration, potentially revoking their right to practice in Ireland. Detailed guidance on making a complaint about a doctor can be found on the Medical Council's website, including this useful PDF.

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  • Will suing my GP affect my healthcare treatment?

    Bringing a claim against your GP can be a sensitive issue, but it should not affect the quality of healthcare you receive. Healthcare professionals are bound by ethical obligations to treat all patients fairly and without discrimination, regardless of any legal disputes. However, it's possible that the personal dynamics between you and your GP might change, which could affect your comfort level. If you're concerned about this impact, consider discussing your healthcare needs with another doctor within the practice or seeking treatment elsewhere to ensure you continue to receive unbiased care.

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  • How do I sue my GP for negligence?

    You should first consult with a solicitor specialising in medical negligence. They will assess the merits of your case, including whether the care fell below a reasonable standard and caused harm. If there's a case, they will guide you through the process, which typically involves obtaining medical records, securing expert medical opinions to support the claim, and then proceeding through the legal steps required, such as issuing legal proceedings. It's important to act promptly due to strict time limits for making such claims, generally two years from the date of the incident or when you first became aware of the harm.

Start your GP negligence claim

If you have experienced poor medical care and you are considering suing your GP for negligence, get in contact with our specialist solicitors today to make a start on your claim or to gather more information. Call us on 1800 390 555 and an experienced member of staff will discuss your situation and potential next steps. You can also email on and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
Medical Negligence Team at McCarthy + Co

About McCarthy + Co

With more than 30 years of experience in dealing with medical negligence cases, McCarthy + Co. has expertise in bringing successful claims against GPs and other medical staff who have delivered negligent care. We are a family-run business, and we pride ourselves on offering honest, impartial, and helpful advice.

Our offices are based in Dublin and Cork, but we work with clients throughout Ireland in locations ranging from Galway to Waterford. You can count on us for legal advice, guidance, and assistance on any form of personal or medical injury.

Useful Resources

Some links relating to making a complaint about your GP that you may find useful.

Our Awards & Accreditations

We are a multi-award winning firm, accredited by the Law Society of Ireland.

Irish Law Awards 2022 - Winner of Excellence & Innovation in Client Services
Irish Law Awards 2022 - Excellence & Innovation in Client Services
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Our Partners

Directly contact our partners via email about your case.

Flor McCarthy

Flor McCarthy

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Twitter: @flormccarthy LinkedIn: /in/flormccarthy/

wears multiple hats, not only as the managing partner of one of Ireland’s leading law firms, but also as an author, speaker and an acknowledged expert in client service, innovation and marketing.

Beginning his academic journey at UCC, Flor furthered his education with a master’s degree in law from UCD. After gaining valuable experience as a solicitor in Dublin, the allure of home and the family brought him back to West Cork to contribute his expertise to the family business.
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John McCarthy

John McCarthy

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LinkedIn: /in/johnmccarthysolicitor/

is a seasoned solicitor with almost 20 years of experience, specialises in personal injury and medical negligence claims, focusing particularly on high-value compensation cases. His extensive litigation experience spans Circuit Court, High Court and Supreme Court levels.

John's practice involves a diverse range of cases, from personal injury and wrongful death to property damage, defective products, professional negligence and judicial reviews.
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