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Understanding How Patients Discover Medical Malpractice

Clock and CalendarEvery year medical mistakes injure, and sometimes kill, people all across the country. California has a set period of time for when patients who have been the victim of medical malpractice have to bring their claims by. One of the requirements deals with when the malpractice was discovered. How do you know if something has gone wrong with your medical care?

Statute of Limitations

Under California law, most types of medical malpractice claims must be brought within three years of the incident, or one year after the malpractice was discovered, or should have been discovered by ‘reasonable diligence”, whichever is shorter.

There are some exceptions to the statute of limitations that extends the time for cases to be brought. However, it is up to the injured patient to prove any such exception applies. For the most part, you have a short window of time to bring a medical malpractice claim.

Reasonable Diligence

What does reasonable diligence mean? The courts have interpreted this phrase to mean that someone who takes the steps a reasonable person would take to investigate health concerns is someone who exercises reasonable diligence.

For example, if after a procedure your condition worsens, or you experience strange symptoms, but you do not go to your doctor, or communicate these problems to a medical professional, you are not exercising reasonable diligence. If you later try and bring a claim, you may risk a court throwing out your claim if the other side can prove that the medical malpractice would have been discovered had you gone to a doctor earlier, and that more than a year has passed since you first should have sought help.

What You Should Do If You Think Something is Wrong

After you have received any medical care, it is up to you to monitor your recovery. If you sense something is wrong you need to be your own best health advocate. You need to follow up with your doctors and explain the problems.

It is not in the best interest of your health, or any future case you may have, to delay seeking a medical evaluation. It is important that you are honest with your doctors about your condition and symptoms.

If you have been the victim of medical malpractice, you need help. You should consult with a skilled and seasoned San Jose medical malpractice lawyer. Call Corsiglia McMahon & Allard at (408) 289-1417 today to schedule a consultation. You only have a short time to protect your rights.

Client Reviews
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My experience with Attorney Brad Corsiglia during my recent medical malpractice case was nothing short of amazing given the very stressful circumstances. I was fortunate to find Brad highly recommended from a mutual contact and from the very beginning of the process, Brad was truly engaged and knowledgeable in understanding my case and providing input on what avenues were available to me. Michelle M.