Records from Narconon used to prove woman did not sue within six months of "suspecting" malpractice
Michelle Craig sued her doctor, Lars Andersen, D.O., arguing that Andersen was negligent in recognizing that she had become addicted to pain-killing medications. Andersen asked the court to dismiss the case; his insurance attorneys argued that Craig had waited too long to sue. In support of Andersen's motion, the attorneys submitted records from Narcanon where Craig had discussed issues suggesting that she suspected that her problems were caused by addiction.The Court relied on those records in holding that Craig had not sued within six months of "reasonably suspecting" malpractice, because she knew she had become addicted and was in a doctor's care. Therefore her claim was dismissed, even though she argued that she did not actually recognize that she had been mis-treated by the doctor.
Medical malpractice claims must be filed within two years of the medical treater's alleged error, or within six months of suspecting an error, whichever is later, and the court held that Craig needed to come forward with evidence contradicting the "suspicion" which it deemed she should have harbored. We're not sure how you bring forward positive evidence that you didn't suspect something.
The Court also held that merely being in a "mentally clouded state" did not extend the statute of limitations: it is only tolled or extended if a patient is actually mentally incompetent.