CACI No. 3929. Subsequent Medical Treatment or Aid

Judicial Council of California Civil Jury Instructions (2023 edition)

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3929.Subsequent Medical Treatment or Aid
If you decide that [name of defendant] is legally responsible for [name of
plaintiff]’s harm, [he/she/nonbinary pronoun/it] is also responsible for any
additional harm resulting from the acts of others in providing medical
treatment or other aid that [name of plaintiff]’s injury reasonably
required, even if those acts were negligently performed.
New September 2003; Revised December 2007, October 2008
Directions for Use
Under Proposition 51 (Civ. Code § 1431.2), the original tortfeasor is entitled to have
the jury allocate fault to any subsequent tortfeasors with regard to the subsequent
aggravation of the injury. Each is responsible only for a comparative share of the
noneconomic damages attributable to the aggravated injury. (Henry v. Superior
Court (2008) 160 Cal.App.4th 440, 455 [72 Cal.Rptr.3d 808]; see also Marina
Emergency Medical Group v. Superior Court (2000) 84 Cal.App.4th 435 [100
Cal.Rptr.2d 866].)
Sources and Authority
“It has long been the rule that a tortfeasor responsible for the original accident is
also liable for injuries or death occurring during the course of medical treatment
to treat injuries suffered in that accident. In Ash v. Mortensen (1944) 24 Cal.2d
654 [150 P.2d 876], the Supreme Court stated: ‘It is settled that where one who
has suffered personal injuries by reason of the tortious act of another exercises
due care in securing the services of a doctor and his injuries are aggravated by
the negligence of such doctor, the law regards the act of the original wrongdoer
as a proximate cause of the damages flowing from the subsequent negligent
medical treatment and holds him liable therefor.’ (Anaya v. Superior Court
(2000) 78 Cal.App.4th 971, 974 [93 Cal.Rptr.2d 228].)
“Obviously, if the original tortfeasor is liable for injuries or death suffered during
the course of the treatment of injuries suffered in the accident, the original
tortfeasor is liable for injuries or death suffered during transportation of the
victim to a medical facility for treatment of the injuries resulting from the
accident.” (Anaya, supra, 78 Cal.App.4th at p. 975.)
“To the extent damages for [plaintiff]’s injured shoulder can in fact be divided
by causation into distinct component parts - the original injury that resulted from
the fall at the [defendants]’ property and the aggravation of that injury caused by
[plaintiff]’s negligent treatment by . . . physicians - liability for each indivisible
component part should be considered separately. The [defendants], if they were
negligent, are solely responsible for the initial injury; liability for the indivisible
enhanced or aggravated injury, however, is properly apportioned between the
[defendants] and the . . . physicians in accordance with the rules of comparative
fault and section 1431.2.” (Henry, supra, 160 Cal.App.4th at p. 455.)
“While it is true the original tortfeasor is liable for additional harm (even death)
resulting from the negligent care and treatment of the original injury by
physicians and hospitals, such liability is not limited to negligently caused
additional harm or that caused by malpractice.” (Hastie v. Handeland (1969) 274
Cal.App.2d 599, 604-605 [79 Cal.Rptr. 268], internal citations and footnote
This rule applies to the first doctor who treats a patient who subsequently is
treated by other doctors. (Maxwell v. Powers (1994) 22 Cal.App.4th 1596,
1607-1608 [28 Cal.Rptr.2d 62].)
Restatement Second of Torts section 457, states: “If the negligent actor is liable
for anothers bodily injury, he is also subject to liability for any additional bodily
harm resulting from normal efforts of third persons in rendering aid which the
others injury reasonably requires, irrespective of whether such acts are done in a
proper or a negligent manner.”
Secondary Sources
6 Witkin, Summary of California Law (11th ed. 2017) Torts, § 1855
Flahavan et al., California Practice Guide: Personal Injury, Ch. 4-C, Effective
Settlement Negotiations, ¶¶ 4:175-4:177 (The Rutter Group)
California Tort Damages (Cont.Ed.Bar) Bodily Injury, § 1.85
5 Levy et al., California Torts, Ch. 74, Resolving Multiparty Tort Litigation,
§ 74.04[3], [4] (Matthew Bender)
25 California Forms of Pleading and Practice, Ch. 300, Contribution and Indemnity,
§ 300.63[2] (Matthew Bender)
33 California Forms of Pleading and Practice, Ch. 380, Negligence, § 380.74[3][a]
(Matthew Bender)
11 California Points and Authorities, Ch. 115, Indemnity and Contribution, § 115.61
(Matthew Bender)

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