Proximate Cause Legal Definition
“What is a Proximate Cause?”
Proximate Cause legal definition: The proximate cause refers to the cause that is legally sufficient to find the defendant liable. In other words, the proximate cause is the one incident that can be pointed back to that caused a patient’s injuries, or started a chain of events that the defendant can be held liable for.
Proximate Cause in Medical Malpractice Cases
In a medical malpractice case, there needs to be a proximate cause in order to find a practitioner liable. The proximate cause needs to be a result of their negligence. Say a doctor orders tests for a patient who is experiencing certain symptoms. The doctor then goes over those results and misses something important leading to a case of delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis. The misreading of those tests would be the proximate cause of that malpractice case.
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