Southeast Missouri Personal Injury Attorneys





What to do if you or a loved one is the victim of medical negligence

Designer Creative - Thursday, April 05, 2018

Medical negligence is the third leading cause of death in the U.S., behind heart disease and cancer.* For many people the medical profession and those who work within it can be very intimidating. Most people are taught from an early age that physicians are trusted sources of advice and that their decisions and recommendations should not be questioned; but sometimes those decisions have life-altering outcomes that negatively affect patients and their loved ones. When this occurs it is critical to know what steps to take to hold those at fault accountable for their actions.


Medical Malpractice

Any act or omission by a healthcare professional during treatment of a patient that deviates from accepted norms of practice, often referred to as the standard of care, and that causes an injury to the patient is considered medical malpractice. This may include:


  • •Failure to diagnose
  • •Drug and pharmacy errors
  • •Surgical procedure complications
  • •Childbirth injuries
  • •Inadequate follow-up care
  • •Medical device defects
  • •Nursing home neglect

In order to succeed in a medical negligence case, the injured party or the person acting on behalf of the injured party must prove that the provider’s negligence directly caused or directly contributed to cause injury or damages to a patient. Proving negligence – defined as the failure to act with the same degree of skill and learning ordinarily used under the same or similar circumstances by members of the provider’s profession – is the key to a successful malpractice claim.


Don't wait to seek help. 


Medical negligence cases are barred if you do not bring them within a specific time period referred to as the statute of limitations. In general, the statute of limitations is two years after the medical malpractice event; but there are four recognized exceptions to this limitation under Missouri law. The exceptions are the “foreign object” exception, the “failure to inform” exception, the “minor child” exception and the “continuing treatment” exception. The rules regarding statutes of limitation in general, as well as the recognized exceptions to such statutes, are strictly construed so you should consult an attorney immediately in any case where you believe medical negligence may have occurred. In medical malpractice cases the sooner you act the better because if you miss the statutory deadline you will not be able to file suit to hold the negligent party or parties responsible for the harm they have caused.
Contact us, and we will help you determine if your case has merit during a no-cost consultation.
The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based upon advertisements alone.





Ways to Spot Nursing Home Neglect

Designer Creative - Saturday, September 17, 2016

Placing a loved one in someone else’s care is never an easy process, and finding a trusted environment for those we love requires research, budgeting and overcoming emotional obstacles.


All of these things make cases of nursing home neglect even more traumatic for both the seniors affected and their family members. According to the National Council on Aging, as many as 1 in 10 Americans age 60+ have experienced some form of elder abuse, including nursing home neglect.


If you’re suspicious that your loved one may be suffering from neglect, a few signs to watch for include:


  1. – Unusual bruising
  2. – Losing weight quickly or showing signs of malnutrition
  3. – Unprovoked fear
  4. – Lack of social interaction
  5. – Disruption in hobbies or interests
  6. – Abnormally lethargic behavior
  7. – Sores or bleeding spots


If your loved one has experienced neglect or abuse while in a nursing facility, those responsible should be held accountable. Consult with an attorney to learn more about your options. The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely on advertising.

​8 Reasons CBPW is right for your case

Designer Creative - Wednesday, June 03, 2015



1.We have over 101 years of combined legal experience.


2.Partner Michael Ponder has over 25 years’ experience and was awarded the Lon O. Hocker Award from the Missouri Bar.


3.$2.55 Million Settlement in Electrocution Case.


4.We’ve litigated cases from Kansas City to Cape Girardeau, from Phoenix to Philadelphia and Miami to Minneapolis.


5.Partner Kathleen A. Wolz holds 30 years’ experience with very impressive appearances at the state and federal court levels.


6.We’re at home in the Federal Courts, the Courts of Appeals and the State Court systems.


7.$4 Million Verdict in Industrial Explosion.


8.Partner Phillip Barkett has been admitted to the Missouri, Massachusetts and Indiana Bar, practicing for over 42 years.


Since its founding, Cook, Barkett, Ponder and Wolz has represented clients throughout Missouri on a wide variety of cases including personal injury, insurance litigation, long term disability insurance claims, medical neglect, mechanical product defects, business disputes, breach of contract claims and construction and job site injuries.


For more information and practice areas visit

Injury - What are my rights?

Designer Creative - Thursday, May 28, 2015

If you are involved in an accident, what are your rights? Most people know they are eligible to hire a lawyer, but what are you really entitled to? Every case is unique, but we have narrowed down the top rights you may receive if someone else injures you:


  • 1.Past Medical Expenses. If you sustain medical expenses as a result of injuries due to someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible to demand they pay your medical expenses. However, they are not required to pay those expenses until you settle your claim.
  • 2.Future Medical Expenses. If you suffered a permanent injury as a result of someone else’s negligence and will require medical treatment in the future, you are entitled to demand that the person who injured you pay for that now, rather than in the future.
  • 3.Past Lost Wages. If you missed work and were forced to use sick leave or vacation days or lost income as a result of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to demand that the person who injured you reimburse you for the wages you lost.
  • 4.Future Lost Wages. If you are unable to return to work as a result of the injuries you suffered, you are entitled to demand that the person who injured you compensate you for the wages you will lose in the future.
  • 5.Incidental Out-Of-Pocket Expenses. If you incur out-of-pocket expenses such as hiring a babysitter, mowing your lawn or cleaning your house as a result of injuries you sustained from an accident, you are entitled to demand reimbursement.

We want to be part of our clients’ reason for moving forward, overcoming adversity and taking back their lives. And we’re here to make sure they get everything they need in order to do that. For more information or for a free case evaluation visit 

​Recognizing Medical Neglect

Designer Creative - Monday, April 20, 2015


What is medical neglect?

When a caregiver fails to provide adequate medical or dental care for their child, especially when needed to treat a serious injury or illness.


Several factors are considered necessary for the diagnosis of medical neglect could include:

  • 1.If a child is harmed or is at risk of harm because of lack of healthcare
  • 2.The caregiver understands the medical advice given
  • 3.The recommended health care offers significant net benefit to the child
  • 4.Access to healthcare is available and not used

Why is it happening?

There are multiple reasons why children do not get the care they need. Some factors include: lack of access to care, family chaos and disorganization, lack of knowledge or skill, lack of trust in healthcare professionals, impairment of caregivers and the belief system of the child’s caregiver.


The medical neglect of a child could cause harm or even death. If you or someone you know has been affected by medical neglect, please call 573.335.6651 to learn more information on how Cook, Barkett, Ponder & Wolz can help.

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The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based upon advertisements alone.

© 2018 Cook Barkett Ponder & Wolz. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use prohibited.



The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based upon advertisements alone.

© 2017 Cook Barkett Ponder & Wolz. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use prohibited.