Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Brooks v. Mercy Hospital

California Court of Appeals, Fifth District

July 1, 2016

ERNEST J. BROOKS, Plaintiff and Appellant,
v.
MERCY HOSPITAL, Defendant and Respondent

          APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Kern County, No. CV-283100, Sidney P. Chapin, Judge.

Page 2

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 3

         COUNSEL

         Ernest J. Brooks, in pro. per., for Plaintiff and Appellant.

         Frazier, Watson & Croutch, Craig R. Donahue and Daniel K. Dik for Defendant and Respondent.

         Opinion by Kane, Acting P. J., with Detjen and Peña, JJ., concurring.

          OPINION

          KANE, Acting P. J.

          Plaintiff Ernest J. Brooks appeals from a judgment of dismissal entered in favor of defendant Mercy Hospital after the trial court sustained defendant's demurrer to plaintiff's complaint on statute of limitations grounds. Plaintiff argues the trial [204 Cal.Rptr.3d 290] court erred because it failed to apply the tolling provision set forth at Code of Civil Procedure section 352.1,[1] which grants a two-year tolling of the statute of limitations to persons who are imprisoned " for a term less than for life." (§ 352.1, subd. (a).) Plaintiff contends that, under a long-standing judicial construction of this provision (i.e., Grasso v. McDonough Power Equipment, Inc. (1968) 264 Cal.App.2d 597 [70 Cal.Rptr. 458] ( Grasso ) [construing predecessor tolling statute, § 352]), the phrase " for a term less than for life" includes a life sentence where there is a possibility of parole. In other words, the tolling provision has been interpreted to apply to all prisoners except those subject to a life sentence without the possibility of parole. Plaintiff is correct that Grasso is dispositive here. As more fully explained below, we conclude that section 352.1 tolling should have been applied to plaintiff, which means the trial court erred in concluding that the statute of limitations expired. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment appealed from with instructions that the trial court enter a new order overruling defendant's demurrer to plaintiff's complaint.

Page 4

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         The parties do not dispute that plaintiff was and is a prison inmate at Corcoran State Prison, serving an indeterminate life sentence that includes a possibility of parole. In April 2013, while serving said life sentence, plaintiff was taken for medical care and treatment to Mercy Hospital in Bakersfield. The parties do not dispute that plaintiff's action arises out of that medical care and treatment. The gist of plaintiff's complaint, as summarized in the parties' briefing, is that defendant negligently overmedicated him and allowed an " IV Port" to become infected, among other things. On September 5, 2013, plaintiff served on defendant a notice of intent to sue.

         Plaintiff's complaint was filed on September 24, 2014. Defendant filed a demurrer on the ground that the action was time-barred by the statute of limitations applicable to causes of action for alleged ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.