What Is the Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice in California?
There is a statute of limitation that applies to medical malpractice cases in California. Typically, there's a one year statute of limitations from the date the patient knew or should have known of the alleged malpractice. At times, there's a three-year statute that may apply from the date of the injury and so it can be complicated.
I always tell patients or clients that as a general rule you have one year from the date that the patient knew or, again, should have known of the alleged malpractice and it's a reasonable person standard.
A patient, for instance, does not have to be told by a subsequent treating doctor that the previous doctor committed malpractice. If a reasonable person would suspect medical negligence, then the law requires that patient to take steps to investigate whether or not there has been malpractice.
It's my recommendation that if there's any question as to whether or not a doctor has committed malpractice to you or a loved one that you contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney to discuss the matter and then he will be able to look at the facts of your case and tell you number one, the statute of limitation runs, and number two, if you have a case and he can take the appropriate steps to protect the statute of limitations so your case is not barred by the statute of limitations.