Injuries caused by medical malpractice can have devastating effects on a person's health, and they can cause families a great deal of financial hardship due to high medical bills, lost income, impairment to earning capacity, lost benefits, and disability. When you are injured due to the negligence of a medical professional, you deserve to be compensated for your damages. However, many California residents may not realize that due to their health plan or the hospital where they received treatment, their medical malpractice case will not be resolved in court, but through a private arbitration process.
Kaiser Permanente, which is centered in Oakland, California, is the largest managed healthcare organization in the United States. Members of Kaiser Permanente HMO plans are required to use Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and doctors within Permanente Medical Groups. While the quality of care provided by Kaiser Permanente is often rated highly by its members, being locked into the Kaiser Permanente system has its disadvantages, since its health plan policies require members to use private arbitration in claims related to malpractice, negligence, product liability, and wrongful death.
When entering arbitration for medical malpractice with Kaiser Permanente, it is extremely important to have an experienced attorney on your side who understands the arbitration system and can help you receive the maximum compensation. The attorneys of Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. have a great deal of experience in arbitration with Kaiser Permanente, and we have helped multiple clients receive awards that have allowed them to recover from the medical malpractice injuries which they suffered.The Kaiser Permanente Arbitration Process
Any claims filed against Kaiser Permanente are handled by the Office of the Independent Administrator (OIA), which functions as a neutral third party that oversees the arbitration system. The OIA follows certain rules and procedures during the arbitration process, and claims are required to be resolved within 18 months after an arbitrator is selected. For complex cases, this limit can be extended to 24 to 30 months.
When a claim is filed, the OIA will provide a list of possible arbitrators to the attorneys for both Kaiser Permanente and the claimant. Each party is allowed to strike up to four names from the list and rank the remaining names in order of preference, and the OIA will select the arbitrator which is highest ranked by both parties. The parties may also agree on a single arbitrator.
Once a neutral arbitrator has been selected, the parties must have an Arbitration Management Conference (AMC) within 60 days, during which a schedule will be set for the arbitration proceedings. During the AMC, parties may discuss issues such as discovery, pending motions, and processes that will be followed with the arbitrator. Within six months after the AMC, the parties must have a Mandatory Settlement Meeting (MSM), where they will attempt to resolve the case through a settlement.
If the parties are unable to reach a settlement, the case will proceed to an Arbitration Hearing, which functions similar to a trial, with the arbitrator acting as both judge and jury. Each side will present evidence and call witnesses, and once the hearing concludes, the arbitrator will have 15 days to make a decision (or 30 days in complex cases). An arbitrator’s decision is legally binding, and it cannot be challenged or appealed.A Compassionate Medical Malpractice Attorney on Your Side
The skilled attorneys of Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. understand the Kaiser Permanente arbitration process, and we can provide you with the advocacy you need to receive compensation for the damages you have suffered.San Jose Kaiser Permanente Arbitration
Our San Jose attorneys can provide experienced representation in a wide variety of medical malpractice arbitration cases, including:
- Misdiagnosis / Delayed Diagnosis
- Birth Injuries
- Medication Errors
- Surgical Errors
- Wrongful Death
- Defective Medical Devices
- Lab Errors
We assist clients in Kaiser arbitration throughout California, including:
- San Jose
- Santa Clara
- San Francisco
- Santa Rosa
- Northern California
- Southern California
- Los Angeles
- Orange County
- San Diego
In medical malpractice cases involving Kaiser Permanente, it is essential to have a skilled attorney on your side who understands the arbitration process. The attorneys of Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. can provide invaluable help during arbitration, including:
- Selecting the right arbitrator for the case. A truly impartial arbitrator is essential, and our experienced attorneys know how to identify and strike arbitrators who are more likely to rule against our clients.
- Referring to Kaiser Permanente’s internal policies to establish whether a medical provider breached their duty of care.
- Obtaining evidence through Kaiser Permanente’s electronic medical records system.
- Presenting compelling arguments and examining witnesses during an arbitration hearing.
Our attorneys can also help make sure you receive the appropriate amount of compensation within the state of California’s statutory limits. The Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act of 1975 (MICRA) set a limit of $250,000 on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. While this limit does not apply to compensation for medical bills, lost income, or impairment to earning capacity, it is important to ensure that these limits are correctly applied. Our skilled and knowledgeable medical malpractice lawyers can ensure that you are able to receive the maximum compensation you deserve to help you recover from your injuries.Frequently Asked Questions About Kaiser Permanente Arbitration Do I need an attorney during Kaiser arbitration?
You are allowed to represent yourself, but you should be aware that in most cases when claimants represent themselves, Kaiser Permanente wins the case on a summary judgment before an arbitration hearing ever occurs. To ensure that your case is heard, it is important to have an attorney representing you.What are the attorney’s fees for arbitration?
Attorney’s fees are based on California statutes, which specify the percentage of medical malpractice awards which attorneys can collect. When we take your case, we will take on the costs of investigating the case and hiring consultants or expert witnesses, and you will owe no legal fees unless we win an award or settlement.What is the statute of limitations for Kaiser arbitration?
Medical malpractice cases handled through Kaiser Permanente arbitration are subject to the statute of limitations defined in the California Code of Civil Procedure, which states that a claim must be filed within three years after an injury occurred, or one year after the injury was discovered, whichever occurs first.How do I know whether you will take my case?
Due to the complexities and costs involved in a medical negligence action and the statutory cap of $250,000 for general damages, we must limit the cases we take on to those involving disabling injuries which result in significant economic damages. Mr. Corsiglia and his staff can determine whether your claim is appropriate and one we can assist with.