We rely on medical personnel in our most vulnerable moments, turning to them during sickness or injury. But what happens when something goes wrong? When those you trusted to help you or your loved one have failed you? The 2021 “Lawyer of the Year” for Medical Malpractice Law – Plaintiffs in Miami, Andrew Yaffa, knows what to do in those next steps.
Yaffa, a partner at Grossman Roth Yaffa Cohen, focuses his work on personal injury, wrongful death, product liability, and medical malpractice litigation.
Along with many high-tension cases Yaffa has worked on, he also provided pro bono legal representation for families of victims of the September 11 attacks through Trial Lawyers Care, the largest pro bono legal services program in history. But Yaffa is most proud of his work in one area in particular.
“I am most proud of the work we have recently done in the stem cell world,” he said. “We have handled a number of cases that highlight the exploitation that is taking place in this arena, taking advantage of those most in need, the most vulnerable.”
One of his most memorable cases involved a young boy named Carlito Candelario-Herrera who was born without arms or legs due to his mother being sprayed with pesticides while she was working in tomato fields. In Francisca Herrera and Abraham Candelario v. Ag-Mart Produce Inc., the sub-par working conditions of Ag-Mart were exposed along with many other violations. As a result of this case, Ag-Mart implemented new policies that would protect their employees and make sure they were safe.
With cases like these, it is no surprise Yaffa finds his field of law rewarding.
“Being able to help those who have been harmed and hopefully preventing others from being affected in the same way [is the most rewarding part of medical malpractice law],” he said.
But on the other hand, with cases that have so much riding on them, it can have its difficulties.
“[The most challenging part is] not being able to replace that which has been lost,” Yaffa said. “It is always a life or a loved one, and we can’t turn back the clock.”
Being a leader in his field, Yaffa says there are three things that make a great attorney,
“Stick with a proven routine, always prepare, and find something you are passionate about,” he said.