Turns out, filing a medical malpractice claim against a doctor, nurse, physician or another medical professional who provided you with an inappropriate standard of care during a surgery or medical treatment is more complicated than you think.
This is because, in California, a medical malpractice lawsuit is usually more complex than all other types of claims based on personal injury. Why? Because the victim of alleged medical malpractice has a much heavier burden of proof and is required to comply with a plethora of procedural rules before he or she is allowed to bring a lawsuit.
Today, we brought our California medical malpractice attorney from the Mancini & Associates to spell out the requirements for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit that most people do not know about.
Before filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in California, you are required to inform the healthcare provider(s) and/or the hospital of your plans to sue them at least 90 days prior to filing a lawsuit, according to the California Code of Civil Procedure section 364.
Our attorneys explain that you do not need some special form to notify the medical professional whose negligent act or omission to act caused your injuries and/or pain and suffering. According to the law, you are required to notify the defendant – the parties you are planning to use – of your intent to file a lawsuit at least 90 days prior to suing.
In your 90 days’ notice, you are required to spell out the legal basis of your claim and the type of injuries, damages, and losses sustained as a result of the alleged negligence or recklessness on the part of the doctor, surgeon, nurse, or other members of hospital staff. For this, you will need to seek legal help from a California medical malpractice lawyer to craft written notice properly from a legal standpoint and begin preparing to file a lawsuit within 90 days.
One of the most confusing requirements to file medical malpractice in California is that you need to retain a qualified expert medical witness who will stand before the judge, take an oath and testify how the defendant’s negligence, recklessness, action, or inaction constituted a breach of duty of care and caused your injuries or harm.
Luckily, if you hire a medical malpractice attorney at Mancini & Associates, you are guaranteed to have a qualified medical witness who will review your case and testify under oath to drive your case in court. Our attorneys work in cooperation with medical experts to bring you the best possible results in and outside of court.
If you are bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit in California, do know that you do not need to file a “certificate of merit” or “affidavit of merit” from a qualified medical witness along with the complaint that details the defendant’s liability and your damages, injuries, and losses. In most other states, this is one of the requirements for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
However, this does not change the fact that you will need a qualified medical witness to testify under oath in court.
Before filing a lawsuit, make sure that it is not too late to do so. Like in other states across our nation, California has a statute of limitations when it comes to filing medical malpractice complaints. You can sue a negligent healthcare provider for medical malpractice within one year after discovering the injury or within three years of the date you were injured, whichever comes first.
Contact Mancini & Associates if you have more questions about filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in California. Call our offices at 818-783-5757 or complete this contact form to get a free consultation today.