The following blog entry is written from a defendant’s position as trial approaches. Reviewing this kind of briefing should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.
(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this medical malpractice case and its proceedings.)
It is also worth noting that situations similar to those described in this birth injury case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, U.C. Davis Medical Center, Mercy, or Sutter.
As such, with trial likely to occur in the next six to nine months, defendants have been severely prejudiced by plaintiffs' inappropriate conduct including the following: (1) defendants have been unable to ascertain plaintiffs' specific contentions/allegations; (2) defendants have been unable to identify subsequent treating doctors so that they may subpoena such records, keeping in mind that it will take an additional 30-45 days to obtain these records once subpoenas are issued; and (3) while defendants can retain, at least, some experts, they will be unable to obtain complete expert opinions until the experts are allowed to review all records. For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
Code of Civil Procedure §36 provides, in pertinent part, the following:
(b) A civil action to recover damages for wrongful death or personal injury shall be entitled to preference upon the motion of any party to the action who is under the age of 14 years unless the court finds that the party does not have a substantial interest in the case as a whole. A civil action subject to subdivision (a) shall be given preference over a case subject to this subdivision.