I am Deborah Schwartzkopff, ECT survivor and founder of ECTJustice.com. I am interested in helping people that have been injured by electroshock to pursue medical malpractice suits or product liability suits.
I am not an attorney nor a para legal. But I have settled in three previous suits: a HIPPA suit, a discrimination suit, and a 2013 psychiatric medical malpractice suit.
I am offering my assistance if needed. You will be responsible for obtaining records needed to pursue this action. I will not follow up with you until you have the information required to proceed.
To take advantage of this offer, follow the steps outlined below. Your time to act is limited. See “Statutes of Limitations” below.
1. Fill out the ECT Questionnaire
You can find this on the ECTJustice.com website.
2. Establish extent of damages
Review this video on ECTJuctice.com before meeting with doctors This will help you to be able to discuss the mechanism of trauma in ECT if you run into difficulties in getting testing.
Print a copy of the letter from the help section of ECTJuctice.com (click here for printable PDF copy of letter). Sign and give a copy to your primary care physician to request the testing you will need to establish the extent of damages you sustained during your ECT sessions. Minimally, these three tests must be done:
- Neurological/cognitive testing. Have this done by a TBI (traumatic brain injury) specialist,
If you have the resources, it would be best to additionally have a SPECT and functional MRI done at a teaching hospital.
Get copies of all tests put on a CD at the time of the test, and take it with you. This is the actual test itself. They are happy to give you copy. When you see a psychologist for neuro/cog testing, ask for a copy of test outcomes along with any corresponding number values assigned.
You have a right to all these records. If there are issues in getting testing please contact me. I cannot help with funding, but I may be able to help with other issues.
3. Obtain ECT medical records
Review the medical records page on ECTJustice.com. Read about starting a log at end of the page. This will help should you run into any resistance. Remember that you are entitled to these records by law.
Request your records, keeping a log of every interaction as noted. You do not need every record type listed on the webpage. But, you do need ALL anesthesia consents and ALL consents for electroshock.
If you had any testing prior to ECT, such as a sleep study, MRI, EEG, eye evaluation, or EKG, request those results as well, even if they tell you the results are normal. These will be used as comparisons to the new tests.
If you run into difficulties obtaining testing or records you may contact me. But please get as much in place as possible before doing so.
4. Find Representation
Once you have copies of your testing and records, contact me at Deborah@ectjustice.com, and we can talk about your situation and how to proceed. If you need help I will draft a request for representation using your information. You can then submit to law firms in your state.
It can take persistence to find representation. However, it can be done with minimal effort by email. And, we do have some interested firms in place.
Statutes of Limitations
Your time to file a law suit is limited. Every state has its own time limits.* Note that these limitations generally do not apply to minors.
Listed below are time limits for each state. If you have three months or more (need minimum of 3 months to get things in place) from time of last shock and can get tests done and records retrieved, then I will try to assist you.
Below are the states and the time limits.
4 years: MN
3 years: DC, ME, MA, MT, NV, NM, NC, RI, SC, VT, WA, WI
3-5 years: MD
2 years: AL, AK, AZ, AR, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, MI, MS, MO, NB, NH, NJ, ND, OK, OR, PN, SD, TX, UT, VA, WV, WY
2.5 years: NY
1-3 years: TN
*If you are outside of the USA I am also interested in assisting but you will have to review the time limits for your country. I will try to assist you but there are no promises in outcomes.
The California class action failed in the appeal process. However, the DK Law firm is moving forward to represent clients who have sustained electroshock injury in California within the last two years. There are suits pending against the FDA around this issue as well.