LAS VEGAS — A trial court erred in dismissing a medical malpractice suit for lack of an attached medical expert’s affidavit, the Nevada Supreme Court held Oct. 4. Because the plaintiff’s alleged tooth injury while under general anesthesia was not “directly involved” with the hysterectomy she was undergoing, the affidavit was not required by a state medical malpractice statute (Susan Dolorfino v. University Medical Center of Southern Nevada, et al., No. 72443, Nev. Sup., 2018 Nev. LEXIS 84).
CHICAGO — A premises security expert’s failure to explain the reasoning behind his conclusions about the security at a Wisconsin music festival where a plaintiff was severely beaten rendered his testimony inadmissible, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Sept. 27. A lower court correctly held that without the expert’s testimony, a jury would not be able to find in favor of the plaintiff, it added (Joshua Milligan, et al. v. Rock on the River Inc., et al., No. 18-1204, 7th Cir., 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 27557).
SAN FRANCISCO — A woman convicted of having a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old boy was severely prejudiced by being denied adequate discovery and the ability to present an expert witness at a bench trial on the plaintiff’s emotional distress claims, a California appeals court said Sept. 25. It vacated a $420,000 award to the plaintiff and remanded for limited discovery (Minor Doe 1 v. Christine Hubbs, et al., No. A143158, Calif. App., 1st Dist., Div. 3, 2018 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 6550).
ANNAPOLIS, Md. — A divided Maryland Court of Special Appeals on Oct. 1 restored a $3.7 million jury award in a wrongful death suit accusing two Baltimore City Fire Department (BCFD) emergency medical technicians (EMTs) of gross negligence in their treatment of a man experiencing chest pains who later died at the hospital (Estate of Kerry R. Butler Jr., et al. v. Joseph Stracke, et al., No. 238, Md. Spec. App., 2018 Md. App. LEXIS 914).
ATLANTA — A Georgia trial court on Sept. 27 vacated an $11.25 million jury award to the son and estate of a man who was killed when he fell 20 feet through a rotted guard rail at a Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority Inc. (MARTA). The court concluded that the judge presiding over the trial had improperly instructed the jury on the issue of superior knowledge of the hazard (Pissaro Wright, et al. v. Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority Inc., No. 2018-300282, Ga. Super., Fulton Co.).
DENVER — A Colorado jury determined on Sept. 28 that a physician, two radiologists and a physician’s assistant were not negligent in their treatment of a man who went to their hospital’s emergency room several times before being diagnosed with a brain abscess at another hospital weeks later (Patrice Stephenson-Licciardi v. Lutheran Hospital Association of the San Luis Valley, et al., No. 16-cv-03000, D. Colo.).
ATLANTA — A Georgia appeals court on Sept. 28 affirmed a jury verdict holding an emergency room physician liable for 34 percent of a $4.5 million award, or $1.53 million, in a medical malpractice suit alleging that a plaintiff was paralyzed from the waist down due to the delay in diagnosing a problem with his recently implanted spinal-cord stimulator (Southwestern Emergency Physicians, P.C., et al. v. Douglas L. Quinney, et al., No. A18A0871, Ga. App., 4th Div., 2018 Ga. App. LEXIS 538).
MIAMI — A Florida federal jury on Oct. 2 found that a cruise ship passenger who fell on the ship’s ice rink and fractured his ankle suffered more than $660,000 in past and future damages but concluded that the passenger bore 35 percent of the liability for skating with faulty equipment and on uneven ice conditions (Edgardo Lebron v. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., No. 16-24687, S.D. Fla.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPMDL) on Oct. 3 refused to consolidate lawsuits filed over the mass shooting outside of the Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas in 2017 that killed 58 people, concluding that the pending actions against the owners and operators of the resort do not present sufficiently numerous or common questions of fact to merit centralization (In re Route 91 Harvest Festival Shootings in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 1, 2017, MDL No. 2864, JPMDL).
MIAMI — Following a second trial over injuries a plaintiff alleged she sustained after falling over a cleaning bucket left in a cruise ship dining room, a jury on Sept. 27 found her 10 percent liable for negligence and awarded her $1,089,900 (Joyce D. Higgs v. Costa Crociere S.p.A. Co., No. 15-60280, S.D. Fla.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A child and his parents reached a $6 million settlement with the federal government and filed an unopposed motion for approval on Sept. 26 in District of Columbia federal court. The parents maintained that health care providers’ failure to timely perform surgery on their son’s obstructed bowel resulted in serious, lifelong injuries that will require extensive care (Larry Hagan, et al. v. United States, No. 12-0916, D. D.C.).
ATLANTA — The Georgia Court of Appeals reversed a defense verdict for a physician accused of prescribing too much blood pressure medication to a plaintiff who was injured when he fell off a deer stand. The appeals court ordered a new trial, concluding Sept. 26 that the evidence did not support an assumption-of-risk instruction to the jury because it was unclear whether the plaintiff knew that the medication would make him dizzy if he didn’t follow his physician’s directions (Shane H. Berryhill, et al. v. Dale P. Daly, et al., Nos. A18A1089 and A18A1362, Ga. App., 2018 Ga. App. LEXIS 526).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 1 denied a petition for writ of certiorari filed by a railway company seeking review of a verdict in favor of an employee injured on the job and the lower court’s decision to give instruction on the assumption of risk in the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) case (Norfolk Southern Railway Company v. Michael Parsons, No. 17-1376, U.S. Sup.).
SHREVEPORT, La. — A lower court erred in denying a statutory credit of $15,161.49 to the Louisiana Insurance Guaranty Association (LIGA) after it stepped into the shoes of an insolvent insurer in a personal injury lawsuit, a Louisiana appeals panel held Sept. 26 (Alcender Williams Jr. v. USAgencies Insurance Company Inc., et al., No. 52,071-CW, La. App., 2nd Cir., 2018 La. App. LEXIS 1819).
MIAMI — A man whose finger was amputated in a shipboard accident during a cruise lost his liability expert for lack of qualifications and reliable methodology but got to keep his medical expert in a Sept. 26 ruling in his personal injury suit against the cruise line in Florida federal court (Mark Horne v. Carnival Corporation, No. 1:16-cv-21842, S.D. Fla., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 165205).
HARTFORD, Conn. — Co-executors for the estate of a decedent who they allege that died of lung cancer after health care providers failed to inform her of a suspicious mass found on her lung should have the opportunity for further discovery or an evidentiary hearing to determine if a statutory repose period is tolled by the continuing course of conduct doctrine, the Connecticut Supreme Court said Sept. 21, reversing and remanding a trial court ruling (Susan Angersola, et al. v. Radiologic Associates of Middletown P.C., et al., Nos. SC 19619 and SC 19749, Conn. Sup., 2018 Conn. LEXIS 281).
TRENTON, N.J. — A New Jersey appellate court ordered a new trial on Sept. 14 in litigation accusing a surgeon of performing hysterectomy before lab tests conclusively determined the cause of a plaintiff’s symptoms. The appellate court vacated a jury verdict for the physician after finding that the trial court erred in allowing a juror to serve after acknowledging a conflict of interest (Sanghamitra Sengupta, et al. v. Saint Barnabas Medical Center, et al., No. A-2334-15T4, N.J. Super., App. Div., 2018 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS).
LINCOLN, Neb. — The Nebraska Supreme Court on Sept. 14 affirmed a $108.9 million jury award to an engineering contractor that sued ConAgra Foods for indemnification after it settled scores of lawsuits related to a 2009 explosion at a ConAgra plant that killed three individuals and injured more than 60 others (Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. v. ConAgra Foods Inc., No. S-16-896, Neb. Sup., 2018 Neb. LEXIS 159).
RALEIGH, N.C. — The North Carolina Court of Appeals on Sept. 18 revived a couple’s claims that a physician erroneously informed them that the wife was not a carrier for the cystic fibrosis (CF) genetic mutation, leading them to have a second child who was born with CF. It rejected the defendants’ argument that the claims were untimely, concluding that the continuing course of treatment doctrine tolled the statute of limitations (Briana Washington Glover, et al. v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority, et al., No. 17-1398, N.C. App., 2018 N.C. App. LEXIS 919).
INDIANAPOLIS — A trial court correctly concluded that the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur did not apply to claims that a hospital was liable for the three-part displaced fracture that occurred in a plaintiff’s right femur following the cementless total hip replacement of her right hip, a divided Indiana Court of Appeals held Sept. 14. It also affirmed the lower court’s finding that no genuine issue of material fact existed on the issues of breach of the applicable standard of care and causation (Cindy Glon, et al. v. Memorial Hospital of South Bend, Inc., No. 18A-CT-49, Ind. App., 2018 Ind. App. LEXIS 329).